Markets down 0.2%; Reliance, ICICI fall

Markets down 0.2%; Reliance, ICICI fall

Mumbai: Indian shares seesawed on Friday but were on course to notch their first weekly rise in three, with export-driven outsourcers climbing on robust results from Cisco CSCO.N and upbeat outlook from IBM.

By 10:35am, the 30-share BSE index was up 0.23% at 17,306.30, taking gains so far this week to more than 3% Twenty-one of its components gained. The benchmark, which is down 0.9 percent so far this year, had started lower and initially fell as much as 0.4%. The 50-share NSE index .NSEI was up 0.1% at 5,184.60.

“The market will trade sideways until we have positive news flow from the globe to boost investor confidence," said K.K. Mital, head of portfolio management services at Globe Capital. IT bellwether Infosys Technologies rose 0.9%, while rivals Tata Consultancy Services and Wipro gained 1.4% and 0.4% respectively.

The stocks were boosted after peers Cisco Systems Inc’s quarterly results topped Wall Street forecast as a global economic recovery encouraged companies to upgrade their networks, while IBM forecast roughly doubling its profit by 2015.

Financials edged lower ahead of April inflation data due by 12:00pm. A Reuters poll of 21 economists showed the wholesale price index probably rose 9.5% in April from a year earlier.

Private-sector lenders ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank dropped 0.5% and 0.1% respectively. However, State Bank of India rose 0.5% ahead of its quarterly result. A Reuters poll showed the leading lender would likely report net profit rose 3% to Rs2,822 crore.

Mortgage lender Housing Development Finance Corp dropped 0.1%.

Energy giant Reliance Industries which has the highest weight on the Sensex, was down 0.5% at Rs1,066.60.

Metals makers edged lower as prices fell in Asia on investor worry about the economic health of the euro zone and China’s growth profile.

Non-ferrous metals producer Sterlite Industries and aluminium maker Hindalco dropped 0.7% and 0.6% respectively. Tata Steel, the world’s eighth-largest steel maker by output, was down 1.4%.

Bharti Airtel gained 2.8% after the leading mobile operator tumbled more than 12% over three sessions, on concerns about a proposal to impose new spectrum fee.

In the broader market, gainers outnumbered losers in a ratio of 1.1:1 on volume of 93 million shares.

Aban Offshore fell as much as 20.2% after the oilfield services operator’s gas exploration rig sank in the Caribbean sea. The stock erased some of the losses and was down 16.4% at Rs850.35.

Plethico Pharmaceuticals rose 2.9% to Rs375, after the maker of herbal and nutritional products said its net profit for the March quarter rose more than four