Media stocks plunge as Sensex sheds 452 points

MUMBAI: Media stocks crashed along with the benchmark Sensex Index which shed 452.80 points to close the day at 10,938. Pulled down by brokers who sold heavily to cover margin requirements and foreign funds to reduce their exposure in the derivatives market, the negative sentiment was also visible in the Nifty Index which ended at 3279, down 109 to previous close.

The major media scrips which recorded a two figure drop include HTMT, Adlabs, Zee Telefilms, Sun TV Ltd, NDTV, Saregama, TV18, Galaxy Entertainment, Gemini Communications and Navneet Publications.

HTMT took the deepest plunge, going down by Rs 48.30 to close at Rs Rs.701.75 at the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE). Sun TV also stood weaker, recording a fall of Rs 38.25 to close at Rs.1192.35. Adlabs went down by Rs 26 to close at Rs 271.45 while NDTV ended the week at Rs 220.00, falling by Rs 21.10. Gemini Communications recorded a drop of Rs 22.8 to touch Rs Rs.433.30.

TV 18 went down by Rs 19 .35 to close at Rs 636.15, while the Zee TV stock dropped by Rs 15 to end the week at Rs 229.60. Navneet Publications recorded a fall of Rs 15, to close the week at Rs 304.30. The Saregama scrip shed Rs 11.35 to touch Rs 250. Galaxy Entertainment went down by Rs 13.55 to end the week at Rs 268.

Other important media scrips which saw the red at the week's close included UTV, BAG Films, Mid Day Multimedia, K Sera Sera, Pritish Nandy Communications and ETC Networks.

Stock analysts feel the Sensex is undergoing an overall valuation adjustment. "The correction in the valuation of media stocks is in line with the stock market crash which fell around 11 per cent in the week. There is no unusual reason to worry about the media stocks," says ING Vysya fund manager Manish Bhandari.

So will the fall continue? "The sensex has already lost heavily. It may further dip by about 3 per cent. But a heavy fall like this is definitely ruled out," says Bhandari.

The media scrips which bucked the trend are TV Today Ltd and Balaji Telefilms. Both recorded minimal gains of Rs 1.35 and Rs 0.75 respectively. "Balaji's strong fourth quarter result has protected the scrip's fall," adds Bhandari.

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