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Friday, May 07, 2004

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Paper stocks gain from rise in global prices

Our Bureau

Mumbai , May 6

THE rise in the international paper prices boosted the stock market sentiment towards paper company scrips in Thursday's trading.

Brokers said that most of the paper companies gained due to the rise in the international paper prices by $25-40 per tonne.

In addition, increased demand for paper due to the elections has made them attractive.

Among the stocks that gained today was India's largest paper company, Ballarpur Industries, which was up 5.04 per cent at Rs 75 on the BSE.

Other stocks to rise were Tamil Nadu Newsprint (up 5.95 per cent at Rs 70.35), Rama Newsprint (up 19.94 per cent at Rs 11.13), Orient Paper (up 17.69 per cent at Rs 61.20), Seshasayee Paper (up 9.98 per cent at Rs 94.25), and Star Paper (up 9.98 per cent at Rs 30.85).

Buying was also seen in companies like Pudumjee Pulp (up 9.88 per cent at Rs 32.25) and West Coast Paper (up 3.93 per cent).

According to industry experts, global newsprint manufacturers and newspaper publishers agreed on a $25-40 rise per metric tonne for second-quarter prices.

The new price level for newsprint offered in Asia will range from $475 to $580 per metric tonne between April and June. Apart from higher production costs, a growing newsprint demand also boosted prices, they said.

Most newsprint manufacturers are already fully booked for the second quarter, according to them.

Another factor for the rise is the booming economies in Asia. "With booming economies, demand for paper increases," said an analyst.

Other analysts said that paper prices are likely to remain firm in the next few quarters. Other than the booming economies, elections in various parts of the world would keep the demand for paper firm.

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