Global cues, banking sector woes suppress equity markets

Mumbai: Despite better-than-expected macro-economic growth indicators, the key Indian equity indices closed the week on a flat note as negative global cues and the stress being faced by the banking sector, eroded investors’ risk-taking appetite.

However, a minor pullback rally led by healthy GDP growth data for the third quarter of 2017-18 pared some losses in the truncated week that ended Thursday, with Holi being celebrated on Friday.

Consequently, on a weekly basis, the barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) declined by 95.21 points or 0.28 per cent to close at 34,046.94 points.

However, the wider Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed trade at 10,458.35 points — down by just 32.7 points or 0.31 per cent from its previous week’s close.

“The week gone by saw the Nifty resuming its short term downtrend after a minor pullback witnessed last week,” Deepak Jasani, Head, Retail Research, HDFC Securities, told IANS.

“Market breadth was negative in three out of the four trading sessions of the week. Sectorally auto was the main gainer, while PSU, banks, metals and healthcare were the main losers.”

D.K. Aggarwal, Chairman and Managing Director of SMC Investments and Advisors, markets across the globe became “more cautious” after comments from the US Federal Reserve’s Chief Jerome Powell which rekindled fears about the pace of US monetary tightening this year.

“In the domestic market front, in the first part of the week markets remained volatile tracking cues from weak global markets and domestic PMI data, amid continued selling in bank, metal and capital goods stocks.”

According to Vinod Nair Head Of Research at Geojit Financial Services: “Market was subdued this week largely due to concerns on NPA and fraud in PNB, trade deficit, rise in bond yield and depreciation in INR.”

“FIIs were on selling mode as foreign brokerages are lowering weight on India.”

Provisional figures from the stock exchanges showed that FIIs sold-off scrips worth Rs 2,535.04 crore, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) purchased scrips worth Rs 4,049.72 crore during the week.

On the currency front, the rupee weakened by 96 paise to close at 65.17 against the US dollar from last week’s close of 64.73.

As per Arpit Jain, AVP at Arihant Capital Markets, the Nifty PSU bank was the top loser down by 5 per cent, while bank Nifty, metals and pharma index declined by 2 per cent each.

“On the other hand, the auto index gained by 2 per cent, realty and energy index gained by a per cent during the week,” Jain said.