Mumbai, Dec 30: Billionaire Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries today lost its position of the country's most valued company to the IT giant TCS, part of the salt-to-software conglomerate Tata group.
As the share price of Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) fell by 2.81 per cent to a multi-year low of Rs 692.90 today, the company's market valuation slipped to Rs 2,26,886 crore—a shade below Tata Consultancy Services' Rs 2,27,282 crore.
Consequently, RIL lost its long-held position (except for a brief period in August this year) of the country's largest company in terms of market valuation.
In comparison to RIL's performance, TCS shares today ended with a modest loss of 0.35 per cent at Rs 1161.25 and were earlier seen trading with a modest gain for most part of the trading session—incidentally the last for 2011.
The performance of TCS stock was also a shade better than the barometer index Sensex, which fell by 0.57 per cent. Earlier this month, RIL had also lost its position of the most influential stock in the Indian market to another IT giant Infosys.
RIL had been briefly dethroned from its position of the country's most valued company twice in August—first to Coal India Ltd and then to another state-run firm ONGC.
RIL's market value slipped below that of TCS for the first time at around 2 pm this afternoon and the country's biggest software exporter managed to retain the lead at the end of the trading session.
RIL has been among the best stocks to own in India for many years, but it continued to under-perform the overall market for most part of 2011, which has as such turned out to be a bad year for the stocks.
For the entire year 2011, the Sensex has fallen by about 24 per cent, while RIL has lost over 33 per cent. On the other hand, the TCS shares have remained almost unchanged for the one-year period.
The marketmen would be keeping an eye on the two stocks in the coming days to know whether TCS would be able to retain its lead in the new year.
Earlier this month, RIL lost its tag of the country's most influential stock to Infosys, as measured by their weightage on the stock market barometer Sensex.
RIL first slipped below Infosys in terms of the Sensex weightage on December 12, and thereafter, a situation similar to game of musical chairs has been on display between the two, as they have overtaken each other on various occasions. At the end of today's trade, Infosys maintained a higher weightage than RIL.
Earlier on August 17, Coal India had toppled RIL as the country's most valued company, while the polyster-to-energy-retail conglomerate had slipped to third position below ONGC two days later on August 19.
About a week later, RIL had regained its top slot on August 23, while CIL had slipped to third position. But, ONGC rose to the top slot on August 26, pushing RIL to second position. A few days later, RIL again rose to the pole position on August 29, and had mostly remained there since then.
ONGC is currently ranked third with a market cap of Rs 2,19,833 crore, while CIL is fourth at Rs 1,90,027 crore. Infosys is ranked fifth with a market cap of Rs 1,58,770 crore.