The US subprime mortgage meltdown has shaved off Rs 2,40,000 crore (Rs 2,400 billion) market capitalisation on the Bombay Stock Exchange in fourteen sessions. The benchmark Sensex has declined by 5.87 per cent (900 points) from its peak of 15795 on July 24, 2007.
Realty, metal, automobiles, capital goods and bank indices have underperformed the benchmark, declining by over 6 per cent each. Oil and gas, healthcare, IT and consumer durables indices managed to weather the meltdown, declining below 5 cent each.
The fast moving consumer goods index was the lone survivor -- gaining 3.24 per cent. Tobacco-to-hotels major ITC rose on account of its better-than-expected quarterly results.
Hindustan Unilever fell marginally by 2 per cent as the personal care giant announced a market buyback at Rs 230 a share. The realty sector was hit the hardest -- down over 11 per cent.
The only exceptions were Orbit Corporation, which appreciated by over 50 per cent following a deal with JSW Steel to develop its Mumbai property, and Phoenix Mills, which saw a private equity player picking up 24 per cent stake.
FMCG: Surviving the meltdown
Fast moving consumer goods shares survived the subprime blues with the BSE FMCG index gaining over 3 per cent. ITC was the top gainer, appreciating 7.3 per cent on better-than-expected increase in cigarette volumes in the first quarter of 2007-08.
Earlier, the stocks suffered a setback following the VAT rule in Uttar Pradesh and a steep hike in excise duty in the Budget.
The other gainers were Colgate-Palmolive, Nestle India, GlaxoSmithKline Consumer and Marico, up between 5 per cent and 6 per cent each. Tata Tea and Britannia Industries , however, ended up in the losing side.
Metal: Win some, lose some
Weakening prices on the London Metal Exchange and corrective price action in ferrous metals saw the BSE metal index drop 12.18 per cent. The index fell by 1,506 points as over 61 per cent stocks came off their highs.
The key losers were Hindalco (-19 per cent), JSW Steel (-15 per cent), National Aluminium (-12 per cent) and Tata Steel (-12 per cent). Hindustan Copper (+25 per cent) and Jai Corp (+70 per cent), however, rose on positive developments in these companies.
Jai Corp was fuelled by stock splits and one for one bonus shares, while Hindustan Copper rose on its proposed gold exploration JV.
Automobiles: Going downhill
Rising interest cost has clipped automobile sales in the current financial year thus far. The BSE auto index was 7.59 per cent down during the period. Of the 22 automobile stocks, only Eicher Motors gave positive returns.
Escorts, Mahindra and Mahindra, Hindustan Motors, TVS Motor, Tata Motors and Force Motors fell more than 10 per cent each.
Bajaj Auto, Hero Honda Motors, Ashok Leyland, LML and Swaraj Mazda declined between 5 per cent and 10 per cent. The sector witnessed a value erosion of Rs 9,400 crore (Rs 94 billion), of which Mahindra & Mahindra and Tata Motors accounted for Rs 3,000 crore (Rs 30 billion) each.
Capital goods: The sheen is off
The capital goods index fell 7.26 per cent (999 points) from its all-time closing high of 13,767.31 to 12,768.35. Around 80 per cent scrips lost ground.
Among gainers, Kirloskar Brothers, Crompton Greaves, Thermax, Kalpataru Power Transmission and LMW appreciated between 2 per cent and 11 per cent.
The big losers were Bharat Electronics and Larsen and Toubro (-9 per cent each), Siemens and BHEL (down by over 8 per cent each) and ABB (-5 per cent). AIA Engineering (-17 per cent), Alstom Projects (-14 per cent), Praj Industries (-13.5 per cent) and Sulzon Energy (-13 per cent) declined by over 10 per cent each.
Bankex: Liquidity blues
The BSE Bankex lost 6.97 per cent or 582.74 points following the recent hike in cash reserve ratio to suck out liquidity. Of the 39 listed public and private sector banks, 27 reported a decline in market value.
The remaining 12 banks, including the State Bank of India (+2 per cent) and its associates banks - State Bank of Mysore (+9 per cent), State Bank of Travancore (+15 per cent) and State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur (+16 per cent), rose on account of their proposals for follow-on public issues. Punjab National Bank, ICICI Bank, Allahabad Bank and HDFC Bank lost over 10 per cent each.
IT: ECB curbs save the day
The new ECB norms on foreign borrowings arrested the value erosion of software services firms. The BSE IT index was least affected, fell 3.81 per cent or 189 points.
Earlier, the rupee appreciation saw all frontline and second-rung stocks losing around 15-20 per cent each from their peak levels in February 2007.
Educomp Solutions and Mphasis appreciated over 10 per cent each, while the big four -- Satyam Computer, Wipro, TCS and Infosys Technologies -- declined between 2 per cent and 7 per cent each. The sector witnessed a value erosion of Rs 21,720 crore (Rs 217.2 billion) with the top four accounting for Rs 10,325 crore (Rs 103.25 billion).
Realty: On a weak foundation
The realty index sank over 13 per cent with seven of the ten stocks seeing massive erosion in their market value. Realty stocks traded on the BSE lost Rs 24,700 crore in market value with the top two: DLF (-Rs 12,250 crore or Rs 122.5 billion) and Unitech (-Rs 6,206 crore or Rs 62.06 billion) bearing the brunt.
Indiabulls Real Estate (-20.4 per cent), Parsvanath Developers (-14.6 per cent) and Sobha Developers (-12.5 per cent) were the other major losers.
Orbit Corporation, however, appreciated by 50 per cent on account of its tie-up with JSW Steel to develop a property in Mumbai and the huge profit on sale of land to JSW Steel.
Cement: Pricing curbs hurt
The BS Cement Index fell 7.83 per cent with ACC and Shree Cement being the major losers, down by over 10 per cent each.
The decline in market value was attributed to the notice from the Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Commission on price cartelisation.
The price restrictive policy by the government hurt the industry in the June 2007 quarter with profit growth rate falling below 50 per cent from over 100 per cent in the previous three quarters. The stocks of Andhra Cement, UltraTech, Birla Corporation, India Cements, Ambjua Cement, and Madras Cement declined by over 5 per cent each.
Power: Transmitting gains
The BS Power Index has appreciated by 2.5 per cent compared with the 5.03 per cent fall in the Sensex. Jaiprakash Hydro-Power (+22 per cent), Torrent Power (+17 per cent), NTPC (+5.60 per cent), Gujarat Industries Power (+4.77 per cent) and Tata Power (+4 per cent) were the major gainers.
Tata Power, NTPC and Torrent power are expanding their base through a joint venture. Reliance Energy, despite bagging the Sasan power project, was down 3.48 per cent.