Profit bookings subdue markets; Sensex down 145 points (Roundup)

Mumbai, Dec 22 (IANS) Profit bookings, coupled with political turmoil and upcoming US macro-data amidst thin volumes, subdued Indian equity markets on Tuesday.

This led a barometer index of the Indian equity markets to shed 145 points during the day’s trade.

Initially, both the bellwether indices of the Indian equity markets opened on a flat note in sync with their Asian peers.

Both the key indices, however, recovered on the back of some stock-specific buying and lower crude oil prices during the mid-afternoon trade session.

But they soon ceded their gains, as profit bookings, parliamentary logjam and upcoming US macro-data subdued investors’ sentiments.

In addition, the delay in passage of the crucial GST (Goods and Services Tax) bill continued to eroded investors’ confidence.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) closed the day’s trade lower by 145 points.

Similarly, the wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed in the red. It ended lower by 48.35 points or 0.62 percent at 7,786.10 points.

The Sensex of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 25,731.07 points, closed at 25,590.65 points — down 145.25 points or 0.56 percent from the previous day’s close at 25,735.90 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 25,787.21 points and a low of 25,485.17 points during the intra-day trade.

The Sensex had closed the previous session on Monday, up 216.68 points or 0.85 percent, while the Nifty ended higher by 72.50 points or 0.93 percent.

“Profit bookings on the gains made during the past couple of sessions dragged markets lower in the day’s trade,” Anand James, co-head, technical research desk with Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services, told IANS.

“Parliamentary turmoil and the upcoming US GDP (gross domestic product) figures, too, capped gains on the higher side.”

The US GDP figures will be closely followed by investors, as it is the first crucial data greeting markets after the FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) decided to raise US benchmark rates.

Nitasha Shankar, vice president for research with YES Securities pointed-out that broader markets gave up their gains in line with the headline indices ending in the red.

“PSU (public sector undertaking) banks, metal, information technology (IT), FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) and auto stocks witnessed a sharp drop in prices in second half of the session. Pharma index saw an uptick after recent under-performance,” Shankar told IANS.

“Market breadth turned in favour of the bears as profit booking was seen across all sectors, with 1,300 advances and 1,372 declines.”

Unlike equities, the Indian rupee remained flat during the day’s trade. It strengthened by two paise at 66.33 to a US dollar from its previous close of 66.35 to a greenback.

Both, the foreign and domestic institutional investors were net buyers in the day’s trade.

According to data with stock exchanges, FIIs invested about Rs.168.73 crore, while DIIs bought stocks worth Rs.238.36 crore.

Sector-wise, heavy selling was witnessed in IT, automobile, banking, capital goods and FMCG stocks.

The S&P BSE IT index plunged by 126.74 points, automobile index receded by 120.58 points, banking index decreased by 76.47 points, capital goods index declined by 75.11 points and FMCG index was lower by 63.15 points.

On the other hand, consumer durables and healthcare scrip ended with gains.

The S&P BSE consumer durables index augmented by 99.15 points and healthcare index gained by 51.75 points.

Major Sensex gainers during Tuesday’s trade were Sun Pharma, up 1.29 percent at Rs.764.15; Axis Bank, up 1.18 percent at Rs.446.65; Bharti Airtel, up 0.75 percent at Rs.323.20; Gail, up 0.55 percent at Rs.338.55; and Asian Paints, up 0.53 percent at Rs.879.70.

The major Sensex losers were Infosys, down 1.67 percent at Rs.1,083.60; ITC, down 1.63 percent at Rs.320.45; Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M), down 1.46 percent at Rs.1,258.50; Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), down 1.43 percent at Rs.2,405.95; and Adani Ports, down 1.17 percent at Rs.257.70.

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