Monday, May 22, 2006
Whats going on?
1200 : The BSE has shut down today at 1155 hours. It collapsed 10.16% - 1111.70 points in under two hours of trading. It collapsed so fast that in office we were talking 500 points 20 minutes ago - "Time to Buy" people were saying. Just like the heady highs sometimes had no logical explantaion - no-one quite knows what has been happening over the last few days. I think the term 'Volatile' just got itself a new definition.
1310 : And now it is going down again, the Indian stock indicies are going batty, the markets climbed to over 10,500 then went down to 10,200 and are now back at 10,300. I'm pressing the 'Refresh' button as fast as I can. Down again, up again, down again, up again. Get back the Viagra somebody!
1350 : Any journalist who can honestly put his/her hand up and claim that they have a clue of what is going on today is lying through their teeth. That includes all our supposed experts over at Parel. Most equity analysts I know have switched off their phones. I'm sure the government institutions are buying right now, but people are selling. And they've been selling a lot!
1440 : Well, a degree of stability, and a very limited one at that seems to have returned, the Sensex has been skitting around 10,500 over the last few minutes. While it has regained a lot of lost ground since it reopened, I can imagine that the good folks at SEBI will be doing a lot of thinking over the next few hours. And so will the headline men over at the dailies. Whats the going bet on someone calling it 'Manic Monday'. Catchy tune by The Bangles that was too.
1535 : The BSE has closed for the day and what a day its been. The first ten per cent fall in the index's history - the market was down over 1100 points at one point of time. Today's range - just Monday May 22, 2006 was 9,826.91 - 11,142.90, over 1300 points! The sensex almost wiped the gains of the last three months in exactly three trading sessions. For the record, the market closed at 10,536.79, down only 401.82 points/3.67% - I don't believe I'm saying the market was down 'only' 400 points, but after what had happened between 1125-1155, only 400 points is a modest victory (EDIT : Whoops, Yahoo Finance, made a boo-boo here, for a while, the markets eventually closed down 456.84points/4.18% at 10,481.77) . The Sensex managed to pull up 700 points between 1255-1530, no small climb in itself. It was as if there were three different trading sessions today - one in the morning between 0955-1155 when it plummeted, another between 1255-1400 when it rocketed and a third between 1400-1530 when it stayed more or less level, with respect to the rest of the day, that is. I've got a funny feeling, we'll be talking about today's incidents for some time to come. This is the last update for this post.
EDIT : Alas no, I'm adding more to this post. The markets might have settled down just under the 10,500 mark, but will it breach 10,000 the wrong way tomorrow. Again! Well, 'Stop Loss' triggers might have been activated on certain scrips and brokers will have to cover margins, so the markets could well fall below 10,000. However, I'm no expert on the matter, and because certain stocks now have 'attractive' valuations (Reliance Petro, maybe?) there could be much hectic buying tomorrow - because stocks which looked extremely expensive less than a wekk ago, seem rather attractive at current levels. Of course, even if you do make money on them, Mr Chiddu would want a lot of that back to pay for Loha Lady V2's pie-in-the-sky schemes.
2100 EDIT : According to some late breaking rumours (I haven't confirmed this as yet) it seems that the FinMin is planning to investigate a particular newspaper (and more specifically, one of its Delhi-based senior business journalists) for writing negative stories that precipitated the crash. The little I know of this guy (I worked with his brother) I can pretty much rule out that the reporter is an operator - unlike experts on some TV channels - and something is even more intriguing right now, just like the last time the markets collapsed (KP) someone rather prominent is MIA again the days the market crashed. Hmmm.
What is stranger is that the FM is rather close to this group, but I don't know why he is barking up the wrong tree. The reportage might have been downcast, but hardly falsified. A couple of things are clear, a scapegoat needs to be found for the crash and Chiddu's gotta find one fast, otherwise his 'active' social life could come under a bit of pressure.
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