Negative global cues drag equity markets lower (Roundup)

Mumbai, April 22 (IANS) Negative global cues, coupled with profit booking and unwinding of long positions ahead of key quarterly results, dented the Indian equity markets on Friday.

Consequently, the key indices of the Indian equity markets closed the day’s trade marginally in the red.

The wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) ended lower by 13 points or 0.16 percent, at 7,899.30 points.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 25,892.49 points, closed at 25,838.14 points — down 42.24 points or 0.16 percent, from the previous close at 25,880.38 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 25,922.02 points and a low of 25,771.88 points during the intra-day trade.

The BSE market breadth was tilted in favour of the bears — with 1,333 declines and 1,234 advances.

Similarly, both the key indices had ended on a flat note during the previous trade session on Thursday. The barometer index had gained a mere 36.20 points or 0.14 percent, however, the NSE Nifty had slipped by 2.70 points or 0.03 percent.

Initially on Friday, the key indices opened on a flat note, as they were dragged lower by negative Asian markets.

In addition, negative close of the US markets on Thursday impacted Asian and domestic indices. The US markets closed lower after some blue chip firms came out with disappointing quarterly results.

Besides, profit booking and unwinding of long positions capped gains.

Investors were also seen reluctant to chase prices ahead of the release of quarterly figures from some domestic blue chip companies.

However, an outright selloff was averted as value buying at lower levels and positive domestic macros provided some support to prices.

“Profit booking continued for today as well. Investors looked to be more keen on exiting. Unwinding of long positions and negative global cues dampened sentiments,” Anand James, chief market strategist, Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services, told IANS.

“Disappointing US quarterly results have also guided the equity markets. However, value buying on the back of hopes that key bills could get passed when Parliament resumes session next week supported prices.”

According to Vaibhav Agarwal, vice president and research head at Angel Broking, equity markets opened on a flat note led by negative trade in the Asian indices.

“Despite the key indices ending flat, both the mid and small cap indices closed marginally on a positive note,” Agarwal said.

Nitasha Shankar, senior vice president for research with YES Securities, cited that bank index maintained its upward journey for the second consecutive day and outperformed the headline indices.

“Continued buying in the PSU (public sector undertaking) banks led the bank index higher with gains of 2.5 percent. Broader markets outperformed marginally,” Shankar noted.

“PSU bank and auto indices were top gainers. FMCG (fast moving consumer goods), IT (information technology), pharma and metal indices witnessed profit booking.”

Further, the foreign institutional investors (FIIs) were net buyers during the day’s trade, while the domestic institutional investors (DIIs) were net sellers.

Data with stock exchanges showed that FIIs purchased stocks worth Rs.191.07 crore and the DIIs sold scrip worth Rs.168.64 crore.

Sector-wise, healthy buying was witnessed in scrip of automobile, banking, and oil and gas, whereas stocks of IT, FMCG, and consumer durables came under heavy selling pressure.

The S&P BSE automobile index surged by 160.96 points, followed by the banking index, which rose by 83.94 points; and the oil and gas index gained by 33.68 points.

In contrast, the S&P BSE IT index declined by 65 points, followed by the FMCG index, which receded by 61.23 points; and the consumer durables index fell by 55.26 points.

Major Sensex gainers during Friday’s trade were Maruti Suzuki, up 3.07 percent at Rs.3,817.35; State Bank of India (SBI), up 2.94 percent at Rs.199.90; ONGC, up 1.55 percent at Rs.216.15; Axis Bank, up 1.51 percent at Rs.474.65; and NTPC, up 1.49 percent at Rs.143.15.

Major Sensex losers during the day’s trade were Hindustan Unilever, down 2.04 percent at Rs.884.30; Asian Paints, down 1.84 percent at Rs.871.60; HDFC Bank, down 1.51 percent at Rs.1,131.40; Sun Pharmaceuticals, down 1.48 percent at Rs.80.15; and ITC, down 1.18 percent at Rs.325.70.



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