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Thursday, Feb 19, 2004

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Good chemistry

A COUPLE of domestic mutual funds are said to be quite bullish in the Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertiliser Company.

According to a market source, the two funds have been accumulating the stock for a while. The source said the main inspiration for them appeared to be the company's chemicals business that is poised to give good returns owing to strong international prices; though expectation of urea decontrol also is a positive.

Also, the company's nitrophosphate complex, which was hit by an explosion in October 2003, is now operational and would be functioning at full capacity shortly.

The company's shares on Wednesday, however, closed 1.1 per cent lower at Rs 57.55 on the BSE. While 63,680 shares were traded on the BSE, 75,972 shares changed hands on the NSE.

Disinvestment rocks

INVESTORS rushed to buy IPCL shares on Wednesday on expectation of the stock breaking its initial disinvestment price of Rs 231 a piece that the Reliance group paid the Government.

The Disinvestment Minister had said that the Government is getting "full support" of the issue managers in selling the shares. The market grapevine has it that several investors interpreted the Minister's statement to mean that the managers would support the share price in the market.

While IPCL shares had declined over the past few days, their price shot up nearly 6.5 per cent on Wednesday to close at Rs 191.90 a piece, almost Rs 20 more than the floor price of Rs 170 per share announced after the stock market closed.

IPCL's trading volumes on the BSE stood at over 22 lakh shares and on the NSE it was at 52 lakh shares.

Rush to hit the list

INVESTORS rushed to buy shares of oil exploration company ONGC Ltd to be eligible for firm allotment when the Government sells it shares to the public next month.

The Government had said on Tuesday that it had reserved over 1.4 crore shares for the existing shareholders of the company and those on record as on February 20 would be eligible.

The oil major's stock flared up 7.3 per cent on Wednesday to Rs 769.40 per share as investors rushed to grab a place in the company's members' register. About 14 lakh shares were traded on the BSE and 28 lakh shares on the NSE.

Dinesh Narayanan

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