Weak rupee, Asian markets pull indices lower; banking stocks aid in recovery
Mumbai: The key domestic equity indices ended on a flat-to-negative note on Monday, as a weak rupee and broadly negative Asian markets weighed down investors sentiments.
However, positive macro-economic update, marginal foreign fund inflows and a rise in banking stocks after State Bank reported a profit for the second quarter aided the indices to pare some losses.
According to market observers, selling pressure was witnessed in oil and gas, power stocks, whereas buying support was witnessed in IT and banking.
Consequently, the S&P BSE Sensex settled at 60.73 points lower at 34,950.92 points. It had opened at 35,118.62 points from its previous close of 35,011.65 points.
It touched an intra-day high of 35,123.41 points and a low of 34,811.60 points.
Similarly, the NSE Nifty50 closed 24.80 points down at 10,528.20 points.
Apart from the main indices, the broader markets like the S&P BSE MidCap index declined by 0.47 per cent, while the S&P BSE SmallCap index was also down 0.28 per cent. The market breadth was positive with 1,290 advances and 1,308 declines.
“Despite positive macroeconomic updates, selling pressure persisted and dragged stocks lower,” said Abhijeet Dey, Senior Fund Manager-Equities, BNP Paribas Mutual Fund.
“On the macro front, the results of a private survey pointed to a stronger improvement in India’s service sector, with an accelerated upturn in new work underpinning quicker rises in activity and jobs in October 2018.”
According to HDFC Securities’ Retail Research Head Deepak Jasani: “Technically, while the Nifty has corrected marginally, the underlying short term trend remains up. Further upsides are likely once the immediate resistance of 10,559 points is taken out.”
“Crucial supports to watch for any weakness are at 10,477 points.”
In terms of currency, the rupee closed at Rs 73.12 to a US dollar from its previous close of 72.44 to a greenback.
“Rupee weakened on account of crunch in domestic liquidity while gradual decline in yield may ease the concern,” Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services said in a statement.
“Investors’ were bit conservative in the holiday shortened week due to uncertainty regarding US China trade deal and (US) Fed policy.”
Investment wise, the provisional data with the exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors bought stocks worth Rs 12.34 crore on Friday while the domestic institutional investors sold scrip worth Rs 621.94 crore.
The top gainers on the BSE were led by State Bank of India, up 3.45 per cent at Rs 295.30; Axis Bank, up 2.35 per cent at Rs 624.30; Wipro, up 1.52 per cent at Rs 323.95; Reliance Industries, up 1.33 per cent at Rs 1,088.55; and Bajaj-Auto, up 0.94 per cent at Rs 2,680.90 a share.
The laggards were IndusInd Bank down 3.29 per cent at Rs 1,491.70; NTPC, down 1.28 per cent at Rs 153.60; Power Grid, down 2.18 per cent at Rs 185.85; ONGC, down 1.59 per cent at Rs 154.85 and Hero MotoCorp down 1.54 per cent at Rs 2,848 per share.