Bargain hunting, positive global cues lift equity markets (Roundup)

Mumbai, Oct 18 (IANS) Bargain hunting, coupled with broadly positive global indices, fresh inflow of foreign funds and a strengthened rupee lifted the Indian equity markets on Tuesday.

Besides, higher global crude oil prices and hopes of healthy quarterly results supported the buying spree.

The wider 51-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) gained 157.50 points or 1.85 per cent to 8,677.90 points.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 27,656.89 points, closed at 28,050.88 points — up 520.91 points or 1.89 per cent from the previous close at 27,529.97 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 28,064.39 points and a low of 27,652.76 points during the intra-day trade.

The BSE market breadth was firmly in favour of the bulls — with 1,899 advances and 934 declines.

On Monday, the Indian equity markets had closed in the red due to lower earnings guidance from IT majors, along with heightened chances of a US rate hike and outflow of foreign funds.

The barometer index had declined by 143.63 points or 0.52 per cent to 27,529.97 points, while the NSE Nifty closed lower by 63 points or 0.73 per cent to 8,520.40 points.

Initially on Tuesday, the benchmark indices opened on a higher note in sync with their Asian peers.

Investors’ sentiments were buoyed by short covering and value buying after the correction in the last two weeks.

Moreover, the crucial Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council meet which started on Tuesday sparked hopes of a consensus on the GST rate.

Another major positive theme for the day was the upcoming release of minutes from the first Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

The stock markets’ participants expected the minutes to reveal the committee’s outlook on future inflation trend and a possible rate cut by the year end.

On October 4, 2016, the MPC had reduced a key lending rate by 25 basis points, bringing in much relief to commercial banks and India Inc.

In addition, fresh inflow of foreign funds, higher crude oil prices and a strengthened rupee, too, supported the upward movement.

The Indian rupee strengthened by 16 paise to 66.72-73 against a US dollar from its previous close of 66.89 to a greenback.

“The equity markets gained on the back of positive global indices and value buying. The GST council meet also helped investors to look ahead,” Anand James, Chief Market Strategist at Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services, told IANS.

“Higher global crude oil prices and an appreciation in rupee also enhanced investors’ risk-taking appetite.”

According to Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls, CNX Nifty traded with firm sentiments throughout the session on short covering and lower level buying.

“IT, banking and pharma stocks traded with firm sentiments. Auto, textile and aviation stocks also traded firm on short covering from traders,” Desai said.

“Oil-gas stocks faced resistance at higher levels due to profit booking. Media-entertainment, FMCG, power and cement stocks also traded firm due to short covering.”

Desai added that bearish “USD/INR” futures price had supported the recovery in the equity markets.

In terms of investments, provisional data with exchanges showed that the foreign institutional investors (FIIs) bought stocks worth Rs 345.04 crore, whereas the DIIs invested Rs 173.36 crore.

Sector-wise, all 19 sectoral indices of the S&P BSE ended the day’s trade with substantial gains.

The S&P BSE banking index augmented 517.44 points, the capital goods index zoomed by 303.51 points, the automobile index accelerated by 284.69 points, the healthcare index edged higher by 263.07 points and the IT index gained by 185.61 points.

Major Sensex gainers during Tuesday’s trade were: Adani Ports, up 6.30 per cent at Rs 266.70; ICICI Bank, up 4.58 per cent at Rs 270.40; HDFC, up 3.82 per cent at Rs 1,351.80; Tata Steel, up 3.46 per cent at Rs 424.90; and Larsen and Toubro (L&T), up 2.85 per cent at Rs 1,488.50.

Major Sensex losers were: ONGC, down 0.75 per cent at Rs 276.35 and Asian Paints, down 0.49 per cent at Rs 1,177.15.



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