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BSE Sensex ends flat ahead of RBI review, up 13 pts

Sensex moved in a narrow range throughout the session before settling at 16,751.73, up 12.72 points or 0.08 per cent.

twitter-logoPTI | January 23, 2012 | Updated 17:47 IST

In a dull trade, the BSE Sensex ended on a flat note, up just about 13 points to 16,751.73, ahead of the Reserve Bank of India's (RBI) monetary policy review and sell-off in heavyweight Reliance Industries (RIL) on account of dip in its third quarter profits.

Globally, most of the Asian markets were closed while European equities showed a mixed trend offering little direction to investors.

Despite RIL's plans to buy back shares worth up to Rs 10,440 crore, its stock fell 2.82 per cent. The Sensex heavyweight posted late on Friday a 13.6 per cent dip in Q3 profits.

However, gains by ICICI Bank, Bharti Airtel, ITC, HUL, Infosys, BHEL, HDFC and L&T helped the BSE 30-share Sensex close in the green. Besides, despite a dip in its Q3 net, Maruti gained nearly 6 per cent.

Sensex moved in a narrow range throughout the session before settling at 16,751.73, up 12.72 points or 0.08 per cent.

The broader 50-issue Nifty, however, ended lower by 2.35 points or 0.05 per cent at 5,046.25.

"The markets acted clueless and lacklustre before the RBI policy meeting tomorrow (Tuesday). The bulls which were highly active until the previous session, could not take the markets higher today. At the same time, the bears could not pull down markets to make a new low," said Milan Bavishi Research Head Inventure Growth and Securities.

Shanu Goel, Research Analyst Bonanza Portfolio said: "Interest rate sensitive banking stocks rose ahead of monetary policy tomorrow on expectations of CRR cut and cut in interest rates in the coming months to prop up slowing economy.

"This week will be eventful as well as volatile with RBI policy tomorrow, and F&O expiry (of derivative contracts) on Wednesday will provide the next trigger for the market."

FIIs, major market movers, have continued to be net buyers for 15 straight sessions and they picked up equities worth Rs 997.30 crore last Friday, according to Sebi data. They have pumped in over Rs 7,100 crore this month.

Overall, 18 of the 30 Sensex stocks closed in the green, 11 ended in the red and Tata Motors was steady.

Maruti Suzuki was the top gainer - up 5.77 per cent, followed by Bharti (3.03 per cent), BHEL (2.69 per cent), DLF (2.50 per cent), ICICI (1.80 per cent), Cipla (1.55 per cent), ITC (1.44 per cent), HUL (1.10 per cent), HDFC (0.77 per cent) and Infosys (0.63 per cent).

However, Sterlite dipped 5.36 per cent, Hindalco - 4.29 per cent, Hero MotoCo - 4.11 per cent, Coal India - 2.73 per cent, Tata Steel - 2.27 per cent, Sun Pharma - 1.37 per cent and HDFC Bank - 0.98 per cent.

From the sectoral indices, BSE-FMCG rose 0.83 per cent, Realty - 0.82 per cent and Teck - 0.81 per cent, while Metal dropped by 2.06 per cent and Oil&Gas by 1.66 per cent.

The total market breadth on the BSE was positive as 1,451 stocks closed with gains, while 1,334 ended with losses. The total turnover dipped to Rs 2,159.90 crore from Rs 2,948.20 crore on last Friday.

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