Geopolitical concerns, lower Q4 results pulled Indian equities lower (Market Review)

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Mumbai, May 5 (IANS) The key Indian equity indices snapped their five weeks of consistent rise as geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, higher crude oil prices along with profit booking eroded investors risk-taking appetite during the truncated week ended on May 4.

According to analysts, even the caution ahead of the state assembly elections in Karnataka and a few lower-than-expected quarterly earning results pulled the key indices down.

On a weekly basis, the barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE fell by 54.32 points or 0.16 per cent to close at 34,915.38 points.

The wider Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed trade at 10,618.25 points — down 74.05 points or 0.69 per cent from its previous week’s close.

“Markets took a breather last week after a strong five-week rally as traders turned cautious ahead of the Karnataka elections and weak global cues,” said Prateek Jain, Director, Hem Securities, adding that most Asian shares remained volatile last week amid caution over the China-US trade talks.

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“In the US, the Federal Reserve held interest rates unchanged at its latest monetary policy review, while indicating that inflation in US is rising towards the central bank’s medium-term target as a signal to investors of possible rate hikes later in 2018.”

Rahul Sharma, Senior Research Analyst at Equity99 said: “Markets settled lower last week as participants turned cautious ahead of the major corporate earnings. Last week heavyweight stocks like Kotak Bank, HDFC along with DHFL, Edelweiss, L&T Finance reported better than expected numbers, while InterGloble, Hero Motocorp, HCL Tech, Emami, Marico and Hexaware missed expectations.”

Sharma told IANS that apart from corporate earnings and guidance, the fate of Iran nuclear deal has also added to investors’ jitters.

Globally, in the week gone by, stock markets mostly remained mixed as concerns about trade wars weighed on the investor confidence, said D.K. Aggarwal, Chairman and Managing Director of SMC Investments and Advisors.

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“Investors’ now awaited news from a US team which has been headed to Beijing to discuss trade and security. Meanwhile, the US dollar continued to strengthen following the US Fed’s hawkish tone on interest rates and concerns over the potential for an escalating trade war between Washington and Beijing,” Aggarwal added.

On the currency front, the rupee weakened by 20 paise to close at 66.87 against the dollar from its previous week’s close at 66.67.

In terms of investments, provisional figures from the stock exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors sold scrips worth Rs 2,688.05 crore, while the domestic institutional investors purchased stocks worth Rs 932.99 crore during the week.

Figures from the National Securities Depository (NSDL) revealed that foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) divested equities worth Rs 1,351.85 crore, or $202.56 million, during May 2-4.

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Sector-wise, the top gainer was the Bank Nifty index, while the top losers were metals, energy, IT and realty indices, Deepak Jasani, Head, Retail Research, HDFC Securities told IANS.

The top weekly Sensex gainers were: Axis Bank (up 5.21 per cent at Rs 520.30); Kotak Mahindra Bank (up 4.04 per cent at Rs 1,231.55); State Bank of India (up 3.69 per cent at Rs 241.95); HDFC (up 3.02 per cent at Rs 1,912.05); and HDFC Bank (up 2.98 per cent at Rs 1,987.85).

The losers were: Coal India (down 6.39 per cent at Rs 271.75); Wipro (down 4.01 per cent at Rs 270.15); Maruti Suzuki (down 3 per cent at Rs 8,679.05); Bharti Airtel (down 3 per cent at Rs 396.60); and Reliance Industries (down 2.20 per cent at Rs 953.90).

(Rituraj Baruah can be contacted at [email protected])

–IANS

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