New Delhi: The Sensex fell, led by Larsen & Toubro Ltd after Citigroup Inc. cut its rating on shares of the country’s biggest engineering company to “hold”, from “buy.”
NTPC Ltd, the nation’s biggest producer of electricity, gained after saying it has bid to buy Globeleq Maghreb, owner of an Egyptian power project.
The Bombay Stock Exchange’s Sensitive Index, or Sensex, declined 50.45, or 0.4%, to 13,599.07 as of 10:38 a.m. local time. The S&P/CNX Nifty Index on the National Stock Exchange slid 14.10, or 0.4% to 3927.90.
Larsen lost Rs11, or 0.7%, to 1,581.4. The shares have climbed 34% over the past six months, compared with the Sensex’s 18% rally.
“The stock appears fairly valued after the stock’s significant out performance against the Sensex over the past six months,” Venkatesh Balasubramaniam, a Mumbai-based analyst at Citigroup, said in a note to clients today. The stock trades at 22.7 times future earnings which fairly captures the growth of the parent business, Balasubramaniam said in the note.
NTPC rose Rs1.1, or 0.8%, to Rs143.4. The purchase of Globeleq will help the Indian company acquire the 682.5-megawatt Sidi Krir Power Project in Egypt, NTPC said in a statement to the Bombay Stock Exchange. The UK unit of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. is the adviser for the sale, NTPC said in the statement.
Overseas investors bought a net Rs4.29 billion worth of stocks on 23 February, according to the latest information on the Securities & Exchange Board of India’s Web site. The investments on 23 February, includes Rs34.31 billion worth of stock purchased by new investors between 1 January to 26 February, the regulator said on its Web site.
The following shares rose or fell. Stock symbols are in brackets after company names.
Alfa Laval (India) Ltd. surged Rs61.15, or 7.5%, to Rs877.2. Alfa Laval AB, the world’s largest maker of heat exchangers used in oil refining and air-conditioning, said it offered Rs4.1 billion to increase ownership of its Indian unit. Alfa Laval plans to raise its stake in Alfa-Laval (India) Ltd to 90% from 64% by offering to buy about 4.7 million shares at Rs875 each.
Lund, Sweden-based Alfa Laval made the announcement in a non-regulatory news filing distributed by Waymaker.
Deccan Chronicle Holdings Ltd. (DECH IN) fell Rs38, or 4.4%, to Rs819. Overseas investors will need the central bank’s approval to buy more shares of the publisher of newspapers and magazines. Foreign institutional investors will need approval as their ownership has reached the limit of 24%, the Reserve Bank of India said in a faxed statement in Mumbai yesterday.
HOV Services Ltd. (HOVS IN) surged Rs14, or by its 5% limit, to Rs294.7. The customer-contact center operator acquired US-based Lason Inc. for $148 million, the Indian company said in a statement yesterday. The two companies combined will have annual revenue in excess of $200 million, the company said.
Thomas Cook India Ltd (TC IN) jumped Rs46.75, or by its 10% limit, to Rs514.9. The local tour operator said it will split its stock, giving 10 shares for every one held to make more shares available for trading, the company said in a statement to the Bombay Stock Exchange yesterday.