Weak rupee, global cues subdue equity indices; energy stocks dip (Roundup)

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Mumbai, Aug 31 (IANS) Caution ahead of key macro-economic data points, along with investors’ fears over the rise in global trade protectionist measures subdued the key Indian equity indices on Friday.

According to analysts, a weak Indian rupee, coupled with consistent outflows of foreign funds as well as volatile crude oil prices dampened investors’ sentiments.

Index-wise, the Nifty50 on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed at 11,680.50 points, lower by just 3.70 points or 0.03 per cent from its previous close of 11,676.80 points.

Similarly, the barometer S&P BSE Sensex closed in the negative territory. It opened at 38,704.84 points, closed at 38,645.07 points, lower by 45.03 points or 0.12 per cent from the previous close of 38,690.10 points.

The 30-scrip sensitive index touched an intra-day high of 38,838.45 points and low of 38,704.84 points.

However, in terms of the broader markets, the S&P BSE Mid-cap gained by 0.35 per cent while the S&P BSE Small-cap ended 0.55 per cent higher than its previous close.

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The BSE market breadth was bullish with 1,440 advances and 1,236 declines.

“The market failed to maintain the opening positive momentum and ended up with a flat note amid lingering trade tensions,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services.

Globally, major Asian markets closed on a negative note, barring the Kospi index. European indices like FTSE 100, CAC 40 and DAX traded in the red.

“Despite negative bias in dollar index, the rupee continued to lose its sheen, breaking the Rs 71 mark for the first time due to higher oil price concerns. Investors are also awaiting June quarter GDP data to get direction from the current consolidation,” Nair said.

Said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research, HDFC Securities: “Markets ended flat on Friday after a volatile session. It was the first trading session of the September near month series.

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“The main indices ended flat despite negative global cues after (US President) Donald Trump stepped up his tough talk on trade.”

On Friday, the Indian rupee slipped to a fresh record low of 71 against the US dollar due to the persistent demand for the US currency amid rising crude prices.

The rupee settled at a record closing low of 70.99 – 71 per US dollar, 25 paise weaker than its previous close of 70.74 per greenback.

Investment-wise, provisional data with exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors sold scrips worth Rs 212.81 crore whereas domestic institutional investors bought stocks worth Rs 171.92 crore.

Sector-wise, the S&P BSE healthcare index rose 339.54 points, the IT index was up 211.25 points and the capital goods index rose by 195.50 points.

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In contrast, the S&P BSE metal index declined by 87.11 points, the energy index fell by 70.76 points and oil and gas stocks ended 42.58 points lower than its previous close.

The top gainers at the Sensex were Tata Motors, up 2.87 per cent at Rs 267.10; Tata Motors (DVR), up 2.63 per cent at Rs 142.20; Power Grid, up 2.37 per cent at Rs 200.60; Sun Pharma, up 1.99 per cent at Rs 652.20; and Bajaj Auto, up 1.65 per cent at Rs 2,746.35 per share.

The majors losers were Yes Bank, down 5.11 per cent at Rs 343.40; Reliance Industries, down 2.60 per cent at Rs 1,240.95; Mahindra and Mahindra, down 1.75 per cent at Rs 965.25; Maruti Suzuki, down 1.25 per cent at Rs 9,097.25 per share; and Vedanta, down 1.13 per cent at Rs 227.20 per share.

–IANA

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