Praveen Gupta, 54, is mighty miffed. A stockmarket veteran, Gupta had always prided himself on being a cautious investor-the kind with 50 per cent stock, 40 per cent bonds and 10 per cent cash in his portfolio. With wife and three daughters, Gupta felt at home with solid, safe blue-chips. But last year, something happened to break Guptas 20-year-old habit.
NASDAQ hit the stratosphere. NASDAQ-listed Infy and Sify were quoting at 100-150 times premium on their BSE prices. He thought local stocks had to follow the US lead. He topped his portfolio with the Silverlines, Sierra Optimas and Visualsofts and, instead of booking profits, he held on. Then on Tuesday, April 4, Gupta and hundreds like him lost hundreds of crores. "Damned if you dont buy IT. And damned if you do," he mutters.