Stocks in India crashed on Friday after investors panicked out of equities following the release of government data that showed inflation soared to a 14-year high. Also adding to inflation concerns in the Far East was crude oil, which touched a record high at over $141 a barrel, after OPEC's president Chakib Kheli told the French media that oil could reach $150 to $170 a barrel in the next few months.India's wholesale price index inflation rate jumped to 11.42% for the week ending on June 14, vs. 11.05% from a week earlier. Analysts said the high inflation reading will force the Reserve Bank of India to continue on its rate hike path. "The trend still remains bearish and there is more pain in store for markets. Global cues and high crude prices will dictate the market move in the coming days. But clearly, the situation looks very grim. Political uncertainty will also keep investors out of the market," said Hitesh Agarwal, research head at Angel Broking. The Bombay Stock Exchange's Sensex Index plunged 619 points, or 4.3%, to 13,802.22. The Sensex Index has now fallen for six weeks in a row, the longest weekly losing streak in seven years. Here's a look at how some India-based American depositary shares traded in the U.S. on Friday. According to Reuters, social unrest broke out at car plant owned by India's largest auto maker Tata Motors ( TTM). Local villagers clashed with police, who fired tear gas and beat the protesters with batons as they attempted to force their way into the factory located in Singur. The villagers are upset because they say the car plant has forced them off of their farmland. Tata Motors plans to use the new plant to build the world's cheapest car, the Nano. American depositary shares of Tata Motors, which trade on the NYSE, slipped 6.4% to $9.97.
Investor fears of another interest rate hike brought out sellers of the Indian banking ADRs in American trading on Friday. Shares of ICICI Bank ( IBN) dove 4.2% to $29.66, and HDFC Bank ( HDB - Get Report) lost 1.6% to $71.56. Infosys Technologies ( INFY - Get Report), an Indian technology services company, announced it has inked a joint research agreement with the Institute of Information Technology Hyderabad. Under the terms of the agreement, Infosys will support research in unstructured data analytics, inference and diagnostics tools and the development of next-generation business intelligence tools at IIIT-H. Shares of Infosys rose 1% to $43.03. Some of the few Indian ADRs to advance on Friday where Satyam Computer ( SAY), which rose 2.5% to $25; Wipro Limited ( WIT), which added 1% to $12.01; and Dr. Reddy's Laboratories ( RDY), which finished up 6 cents to $15.29. Be sure to check out the Far East Portfolio at Stockpickr.com every night to find out which stocks in India and China are making big moves and announcing major news. China Recap Chinese stock markets in Hong Kong and in mainland China dove sharply Friday on rumors that the Chinese government will raise interest rates over the weekend to combat out-of-control inflation. "The possibility that the central bank will raise interest rates is high as inflation expectations grow stronger after the government raised the prices of refined oil products and electricity," said Hu Yu, an analyst with Chinalion Securities. Liquidity concerns delivered another blow to investor sentiment after the China Securities Regulatory Commission said it plans to review initial public offerings applications for Everbright Securities, China South Locomotive and Rolling Stock Corp on June 30. Market players are worried that a new flood of stock will tap into liquidity when the Chinese markets are already perceived to be in the danger zone.
The Shanghai Composite Index plunged 153.42 points, or 5.29%, to 2,748.43, and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index dropped 413.32 points, or 1.8%, to 22,042.35. Here's a look at how some China-based American depositary shares traded in the U.S. on Friday. China's largest wireless operator China Mobile ( CHL) said that talks with Apple Computer ( AAPL) have cleared a major hurdle in its efforts to bring the iPhone into China. Rainie Lei, a spokeswoman for China Mobile, said that Apple is no longer asking for a revenue-sharing model but that there are practical issues that still need to be worked out, including a timetable for when the iPhone would debut in mainland China. American depository shares of China Mobile, which trade on the NYSE, moved up 34 cents to $66.38. Chinese vertically integrated and specialty pharmaceutical company Tongjitang Chinese Medicines ( TCM) announced that its CEO and chairman of the board, Mr. Xiaochun Wang, and Yongcun Chen, a director at the firm, have withdrawn their proposal to acquire outstanding shares of the company. The duo cited the weakness in the credit markets for their reason to pull the offer of $10.20 per ADR. Shares of Tongjitang dropped 3.4% go $6.65. Chinese alternative energy company Yingli Green Energy ( YGE) announced it has closed four new sales contracts with two German photovoltaic companies at the Intersolar 2008 Technology Trade Fair. The company said it inked a deal with Conergy AG to supply them with 7 megawatts of PV modules in 2008 and 50 megawatts of PV in 2009. Yingli also signed two deals with GeckoLogic GmbH for the delivery of 4 megawatts of PV modules between September 2008 and December 2008 and 3 megawatt of PV between October 2008 and March 2009. Shares of Yingli fell 9.1% to $16.16.
Elsewhere in the Chinese alternative energy complex, shares of Trina Solar ( TSL) dove 8.7% to $30.71; Solarfun Power ( SOLF) dropped 6% to $18.04; Suntech Power ( STP) fell 5% to $36.53; Suntech Power ( STP) lost 7% to $38.45; and LDK Solar ( LDK) moved down 3.6% to $39.82. According to Sina.com, Chinese advertising company Focus Media ( FMCN) is denying market rumors that the company plans to close down its subsidiary Focus Wireless, after the division was hit with controversy over its SMS and MMS business for spamming consumers with text messages. The company said some employees have left the firm as it reorganizes and gets out of the SMS business. Shares of Focus Media finished essentially flat at $27.05. Piper Jaffray upgraded Chinese online gaming operator The9 Limited ( NCTY) from neutral to buy and upped its price target from $26 to $31. The firm cited an improving outlook for Worlds of Warcraft and raised its 2008 EPS estimates from $1.65 to $1.80, and bumped up its 2009 EPS estimates for $1.98 to $2.10. Shares of The9 finished higher by 1% to $22.50. Be sure to check out the Far East Portfolio at Stockpickr.com every night to find out which stocks in India and China are making big moves and announcing major news.