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India's Sensitive Index advanced for a third day in a row as investors in the Far East prepared to hear from India's Finance Minister, Palaniappan Chidambaram, on the country's economic budget Feb. 29. Market players are hoping that Chidambaram will cut income and corporate taxes in an effort to stimulate growth.

"With growth expected to slow due to higher rates and uncertainty regarding the impact of the U.S. recession, we expect the finance minister to provide some stimulus by reducing corporate and income taxes," said Tushar Poddar, an economist for Goldman Sachs Group. The Sensitive Index traded up slightly by 19.8 points, or 0.1%, to 17,825.99.

Leading the advancers among Indian ADRs Wednesday were online Internet portal


, up 5% to $8.79; business outsourcing firm

WNS Holdings

(WNS) - Get Free Report

, up 3.5% to $15.34; and


(HDB) - Get Free Report

, up 3% to $116.30.


Financial Times

reported that

Tata Motors

(TTM) - Get Free Report


Ford Motors

(F) - Get Free Report

are making progress in a deal to sell luxury car brands Jaguar and Land Rover to Tata for $2 billion. Shares of TTM closed roughly flat, down 0.7% at $18.02, and Ford finished up 1.2% at $6.60.

In the technology sector,


(INFY) - Get Free Report

was chosen as one of three global preferred venders for software and IT services by diesel and natural gas engine maker


(CMI) - Get Free Report

, according to a company press release. Shares of Infosys fell 0.9% to $42, and CMI fell 0.9% to $52.90.

Be sure to check out the

Far East Portfolio

at every night to find out which stocks in India and China are making big moves and announcing major news.

China Recap

Hong Kong stocks rose sharply Wednesday after the government introduced tax-relief initiatives and waived business registration fees and rates. "Measures introduced in the fiscal 2008 budget are not expected to impair the government's financial position in the medium term," said S&P credit analyst Kim Eng Tan.

The Hang Seng Index closed up 610.06 points, or 3.2%, at 24,483.84. Stocks in China also roared ahead, as value investors scooped up shares of firms they deemed to be trading at attractive levels. The Shanghai Composite Index closed up 2.3% at 4,334.05.

Chinese search engine provider

(BIDU) - Get Free Report

was a big winner among the Chinese ADRs. Shares of Baidu exploded higher by $21, or 8.8%, to $258.85. Many market participants contributed the rally in Baidu to an oversold technical bounce. The stock also benefited from an upgrade of sector leader


(GOOG) - Get Free Report

by Bank of America.

Bank of America remained active with a slew of downgrades for the Chinese alternative energy stocks. The firm downgraded four Chinese solar names and cut its price target for all of the stocks, citing gross margin concerns from silicon, weak demand in Spain and Germany and higher supply concerns for modules.

Analyst Eric Brown cut

JA Solar Holdings



Yingli Green Energy


from buy to neutral. He also cut

Solarfun Power Holdings

( SOLF) from neutral to sell and

Trina Solar


to sell from buy. JA Solar remained nearly flat at $15.90, while Yingli Green dropped 11% to $16.90, Solarfun Power shed 13% to $12.18 and Trina Solar dipped 9% to $31.01.

Another Chinese solar name that saw increased selling pressure was

LDK Solar


. Analysts expressed concerns about LDK's polysilicon inventory accounting practices on the quarterly conference call Monday. LDK Solar reports its inventory in two ways: material to be used within a year and material slated for beyond one year. LDK's chief financial officer, Jack Laif, defended his firm's accounting practice, but analysts on Wall Street remain confused by the company's accounting standards.

"We believe investors will be disappointed by the unchanged 2008 guidance and management's evasiveness to questions related to changes in inventory, capex and financing sources for the aggressive expansion plans," said Oppenheimer & Co. analyst Adam Hinckley in a note to clients Tuesday. Shares of LDK fell 8% to $27.77.

Recently, Merrill Lynch came out with new ratings on the Chinese oil and natural gas producers. The firm downgraded


(PTR) - Get Free Report

to sell,


(SHI) - Get Free Report

to neutral and maintained its neutral rating on


(CEO) - Get Free Report

. Shares of PTR rose 3% to $154.32, Sinopec advanced 3% to $48.73, and CEO traded up 1.8% to $173.86.

Be sure to check out the

Far East Portfolio

at every night to find out which stocks in India and China are making big moves and announcing major news.

For more on Asia, check out

Daniel Harrison's coverage



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