The BSE Sensex opened lower on Monday, extending last week's first weekly drop in 2012, as investors took profits on high oil prices that could revive inflation worries.
At 9.20 am, the BSE Sensex traded flat shedding 33 points at 17888 in line with the broader trend in Asia. The NSE Nifty fell 16 points to 5413.
The spike in oil prices, driven by heightening tension between Iran and the West, has also raised concerns about damage to the fragile global economy.
Investors were cautious ahead of election results and the budget on 16 March 2012.
As expected, shares of Sesa Goa fell 7.2 per cent when market opened while Sterlite Industries rose 3 per cent and Cairn India rose 2 per cent.
Analysts said that the stock market would react positively for Vedanta in London and Cairn India on local bourses. The impact on Sesa Goa would be negative as it is an acquirer of assets. Some analysts said that Sesa Goa shares could fall 12-13 per cent on Monday.
While the deal clearly simplifies the holding structure for the Vedanta group and reduces debt of $ 5.9bn, Sesa Goa dilutes equity significantly to consolidate assets.
Sesa Goa, the largest iron-ore exporter in India, will absorb Sterlite Industries India in an all-share deal. Investors will get three Sesa Goa shares for five shares of Sterlite. Vedanta will transfer its 38.8% holding in Cairn India, including a debt of $5.9 billion, to Sesa Sterlite, the new company that will hold 58.9 percent of Cairn India. Vedanta
Aluminium, the Indian aluminum unit in which Vedanta owns a 70.5 percent stake, and Madras Aluminium will also be consolidated into the new company.
ONGC shares rose 0.5 per cent as the government is expected to discuss a share share in the state-owned company today.
Kingfisher Airlines shares opened firm by 2 per cent after UK-based newspaper cited the chairman Vijay Mallya as saying the struggling airline is talking with two foreign carriers about a potential rescue package that could be announced within days.
The 30-share BSE index fell 2 percent last week to 17,923.57, after registering weekly gains for seven weeks in a row.
(Edited by NDTV, original story by Reuters)