Indian shares fell sharply on Wednesday, mirroring weak Asian cues as Greece coalition talks failed and data showed Japanese core machinery orders fell for the first time in three months in March, declining a seasonally adjusted 2.8 percent from the previous month.
Greece is heading for a fresh general election after the second round of talks between political parties to form a coalition government failed to reach agreement on Tuesday. "Unfortunately, the country is heading again toward elections in a few days, under very bad conditions," the socialist Pasok party leader Evangelos Venizelos told reporters after the talks failed to break the deadlock. A statement from the office of President Karolos Papoulias confirmed it.
Elections are expected to take place within a month, which is beyond the deadline for a new government to come to power if the debt-ridden country is to get the next installment of bail out fund from the European Union and International Monetary Fund. The new elections are seen as referendum on whether Greece should remain a member of the eurozone.
The benchmark 30-share Sensex is currently trading near the day's lows at 16,030, down about 300 points or 1.82 percent from its previous close, while the broader Nifty index is down 86 points or 1.74 percent at 4,857.
Tata Motors is plunging 6.2 percent after reporting flat global sales in April. Bharti Airtel, which is under the Enforcement Directorate scanner for alleged money laundering, is down half a percent.
Metal stocks like Sterlite Industries, Jindal Steel, Tata Steel and Hindalco are down over 2 percent each, private sector lender ICICI Bank is losing 2.6 percent, property developer DLF is declining 3 percent, car maker Maruti Suzuki is tumbling 3.4 percent and mortgage lender HDFC is moving down 3.6 percent.
Cox & Kings is losing 2.4 percent after its board approved an investment from an institutional investor of up to $140 million at Prometheon Holdings (UK), a wholly-subsidiary of the company. Pantaloon Retail is tumbling 3 percent after its board approved a scheme of arrangement for transferring its Home Town division to one of its wholly-owned subsidiary.
Indian Overseas Bank is moving down 0.8 percent on fund raising reports. Chettinad Cement is plunging 7 percent after its board approved a proposal for delisting. Aviation stocks are trading mostly lower, with Jet Airways and SpiceJet falling 2-3 percent, after oil companies cut jet fuel prices marginally. Kingfisher is posting a modest 0.4 percent gain.
Unitech is losing 1.5 percent, while Videocon Industries is up 1.2 percent after they announced quarterly results. BPCL is gaining 1.7 percent after discovering a major new gas field in Mozambique. Piramal Healthcare is up 0.8 percent on the buzz that it may announce a strategic acquisition today.
Indian shares rebounded on Tuesday, with benchmark indexes Sensex and the Nifty rising around 0.7 percent each, as bargain hunters stepped in after five straight days of losses. Falling oil prices and the strengthening of rupee from a near record low against the dollar amidst what dealers called "massive" intervention from the Reserve Bank of India also encouraged investors to cherry-pick battered stocks.
On Wall Street, the major averages ended Tuesday's session at their worst closing levels in over three months, as news that Greece is heading for a fresh general election dented sentiment, overshadowing a batch of relatively upbeat economic data on home-builder confidence and activity in the New York manufacturing sector. The Dow shed half a percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq slid 0.3 percent and the S&P 500 dropped 0.6 percent.
by RTT Staff Writer
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