Mumbai: Trader and investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala spoke to CNBC-TV18 about his views on the stock market. Edited excerpts:
After the election, we had spoken and I don’t think that we knew then that the markets would be here. What is the screen telling you now?
The screen is telling me that the bear correction of the larger bull market in India is over. ...Or, surely, (it was) just a correction in (the) longer-term bull market which started, in my opinion, in September 2001. Because the real bottom the markets made was post-September 11 and then markets went to 3,500 and then corrected back and then from April 2003, it was history. So despite all people’s apprehensions, doubts and the economic scenario worldwide, it could be that the fall was just a correction...
Cautious approach: Trader and investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala. Santosh Verma / Bloomberg
Do you see the kind of participation that you saw in 2007, that is not visible just yet?
Not at all, not even 5%... I don’t know where the buying is coming from. I don’t think...even 20% of the participation that was there in 2007 (is in the present market yet).
Will they all get sucked in?
Well, it is difficult to leave a burning cigarette and a rising market. Everyone will ultimately join.
Are you trading with a bit more caution or are you trading the kind of volumes that you were trading in the big momentum of 2007?
I don’t think I am trading at what I was trading at in 2007. Because I am also human, I am affected by thoughts, all of us are. But I am far more sure than most people about the long-term growth prospects and strength.
Do you think 6,100 is possible for the Nifty to touch in 2009?
Did you think 4,500 was possible?
No, I am asking you...
I am saying what the tech analyst is saying. And I also think if it breaks 4,650 decisively, on a weekly basis, and holds for a week or so, then surely we can go to 5,000, even 5,900-6,000 levels. We could go there, consolidate, then come back, maybe (to) 5,000-5,200-4,800-4,500, make a range, consolidate for a year or so, and then we can move. Or what we will do is we can go to 5,800; if we break 4,650, we will go to 5,850-5,900-6,000, come back to 3,300-3,400 and maybe spend three-four years there.
How you are mapping or what is your best guess for 2009. Do you think we will actually go to 5,800-5,900 in 2009?
I said what I think...but I put caveats. The (Nifty) index should cross 4,650 on a weekly basis, hold for a week or two. Then I think it should. But I don’t know where and what (is the) level of range. The market will come into a range, stay for some time and only then will we see a very, very big move. We have seen a big move, I don’t know where it will end—4,800, 5,800, 6,000. I think, surely, it will end before 6,000. 21,000, I don’t think we will cross in a straight line... And then we have to correct and make a range and then we can move.
Do you think that a bigger bull market will commence which goes to a new high?
What I feel is...the bull market that started in September 2001, we had a bull market till 2008; we had first leg till September 2002, then corrected and started from April 2003, that led to 21,000, that corrected to 7,500-8,000 and now we have?resumed that bull market.
Right now, what sums up your state of mind—wildly optimistic, terribly and totally bullish or cautiously bullish?
Little of all three.
With an ascent on caution or bullishness?
I am cautious.
But what is making you cautious?
Sheer psychology of the fact that the global economy is trending downwards.