Sensex slips 15 points as speculators turn jittery

Mumbai, January 28: | Updated: Jan 29 2002, 05:30am hrs
Sideways to weak stock price movement was witnessed on the bourses on Monday as the BSE-30 Sensitive Index (Sensex) and the National Stock Exchange’s Nifty closed with loses for the third consecutive day as supplies from foreign funds remained unabated across all the sectors forcing speculators to unwind their earlier built positions.

The Sensex closed down 14.66 points at 3317.64 points after opening on a higher note at 3338.37 points, scaled higher to 3363.17 points on speculative buying in morning trades. But afternoon trades saw supplies from FIIs and pushed the Sensex into negative territory. On the NSE, S&P CNX Nifty closed down 8.75 points at 1071.35 points.

The market opened on a flat note and moved higher on speculative buying on expectation of follow through purchases by institutional investors, but supplies from the FIIs took the steam out and speculators who were forced to unwind their long positions. What is more, the expected beginning-of-the-year supplies of fresh funds from overseas investors too was not seen forthcoming primarily on uncertainties on the borders.

"There have been presentations made to overseas investors since the beginning of the year," said a BSE broker. "However, even when the funds are said to have been committed for investing in India, the actual flow of even part of these funds is still awaited."

Inevitably, the speculators were seen losing steam and were forced to unwind their long positions, traders said.

Ahead of its quarterly results to be announced on Thursday, Reliance Industries counter witnessed selling that saw the stock close down around Rs two to Rs 313.55.

Among others, auto and cement sectors witnessed selling. ACC closed down 1.40 per cent at Rs 204.85 on the BSE, Grasim down 0.52 per cent at Rs 279 and Gujarat Ambuja Cement down 1.40 per cent at Rs 204.85 on profit booking after recent sharp gains. However, L&T closed higher after the company announced a 64 per cent rise in the net profit to Rs 54.51 crore in Q3. Auto stocks Hero Honda closed down Rs 13.10 at Rs 304.75, Telco down Rs 5.80 at Rs 116.25 and M&M down Rs 0.70 at Rs 107.95.

Among Sensex weights, Infosys extended its downward spiral closing Rs 53.85 lower at Rs 3,773.25, Satyam down Rs 9.75 at Rs 250.25 and ITC down Rs 15.80 at Rs 708.25.