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Sensex loses 321 points, drops to six-week low

Sensex loses 321 points, drops to six-week low
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First Published: Wed, Jan 21 2009. 06 27 PM IST
Updated: Wed, Jan 21 2009. 06 27 PM IST
Mumbai: Share prices fell on Wednesday, dragging the Bombay Stock Exchange’s (BSE) benchmark index to its lowest in six weeks, on concerns that mounting bank losses worldwide will deepen the global recession.
ICICI Bank Ltd and HDFC Bank Ltd both declined to their lowest in more than a month. US stocks sank on Tuesday, sending the Dow Jones Industrial Average to its worst inauguration day decline, as financial shares plunged near a 14-year low.
“We are going to see a lot of volatility in the first six months of the year as the world’s biggest economy starts stabilizing,” said Sanjay Dongre, who helps manage equities at UTI Asset Management Co. Ltd in Mumbai. “The stimulus packages of central bankers may work with a lag effect.”
The Sensex retreated 321.38 points, or 3.5%, to 8,779.17, its lowest since 5 December. The S&P CNX Nifty index on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) fell 90.45 points, or 3.2%, to 2,706.15.
Wipro Ltd fell to the lowest in two months after third quarter (Q3) profit growth slowed and lagged behind analysts’ estimates.
Financial companies led US stocks lower on Tuesday as Barack Obama was sworn in as president. The Dow declined 4%. State Street Corp., the largest money manager for institutions, tumbled 59% after unrealized bond losses almost doubled. Wells Fargo and Co. and Bank of America Corp. slumped more than 23% on an analyst’s prediction that they’ll need to take steps to shore up their balance sheets.
ICICI fell 6.8% to Rs369.35, the lowest since 5 December. HDFC Bank Ltd slid 2.5% to Rs889.45, the lowest since 3 December. State Bank of India slid 2.9% to Rs1,081.20. The share prices are composite of BSE and NSE rates.
Housing Development Finance Corp. Ltd lost 7.6% to Rs1,373.55, a near two-month low, after Q3 profit missed analyst estimates. The net profit fell to Rs547 crore, lagging the Rs580 crore median estimate of analysts in a survey by Bloomberg.
Wipro fell 3.7% to Rs219.70, its lowest since 20 November. The net income rose 8.7% to Rs898 crore in the three months ended 31 December. The profit missed the Rs980 crore median estimate in a Bloomberg survey. Sales climbed 25% to Rs6,540 crore.
Dr Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd fell Rs20.85, or 4.5%, to Rs447.05 after the company reported a profit in Q3 from a loss a year earlier. The net income for the quarter ended 31 December was Rs192 crore.
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First Published: Wed, Jan 21 2009. 06 27 PM IST
More Topics: Stocks | Sensex | Markets | Wipro | Trade |