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Wednesday, May 05, 2004

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Columns - Ear to the ground


Concrete gains

THE stock of cement-maker ACC firmed up ahead of results on strong buying interest from a couple of local mutual funds as well as speculative traders.

According to a market source, a group of traders were said to be active at the counter on Tuesday. According to the source, a foreign broking firm has also strongly recommended the ACC stock to its clients. Other cement stocks too were moving up today after reports suggested manufacturers are preparing for a price hike.

The ACC stock rose 5.13 per cent to close at Rs 285.70 on the BSE. While about 14 lakh shares were traded on the exchange, nearly 36 lakh shares were traded on the NSE.

Banking on funds

UNION Bank was in the limelight on Tuesday with one large mutual fund aggressively buying the stock from the market.

A large Mumbai-based broker was reportedly mopping up supplies from the counter on behalf of the fund. Investors have begun to favour banking stocks again; a trend reflected in the BSE Bankex that rose 1.19 per cent. The Union Bank stock closed at Rs 88.55, nearly 5 per cent up from its previous close on the BSE.

Trading volume on the BSE stood at 45.58 lakh but soared to over 1.4 crore on the NSE.

Ancillary action

THERE was some action in auto ancillary stocks on Tuesday.

According to the market grapevine, two large domestic funds were picking up shares of Amtek Auto and SKF Bearings.

While Amtek hit the 15 per cent circuit at Rs 708.25 with a trading volume of 3.23 lakh shares on the BSE and 4.44 lakh on the NSE.

SKF Bearings rose about 5 per cent to close at Rs 101 on the BSE with a volume of 1.05 lakh on the BSE and 2.55 lakh on the NSE.

Fund buying lifts power stocks

A large mutual fund that collected about Rs 400 crore in its power sector fund was said to be buying the stocks of BHEL and ABB on Tuesday. A source said the fund had been sitting on cash for a while but entered the market on Tuesday to buy power sector stocks. BHEL and ABB were buoyed by its purchases, he said.

BHEL rose 1.85 per cent to close at Rs 587.20 and ABB rose 2.5 per cent to end the day at Rs 806 on the BSE.

Dinesh Narayanan

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