Markets end flat, log 2nd consecutive weekly gains

Mumbai: Markets ended steady in a choppy session today with the Sensex falling below the 27,000-mark after marking its new 7-month high in intra-day trade following profit-booking in recent outperformers, even as both indices recorded gains for the second straight week.

Cautious stance adopted by participants ahead of next week’s RBI monetary policy too influenced trading sentiment, brokers said.

Caution also prevailed ahead of all important US non-farm Pay Roll data due later in the day as gains in jobs could prompt the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates this month itself.

Earlier in the day, the market ruled firm and even marked its new seven-month high of 27,008.14 on bullish global cues and upbeat domestic sentiment on account of sustained FII inflows, strong macro-economic data and above normal monsoon forecast.

For the week, the BSE Sensex rose 189.43 points, or 0.71 per cent, and the NSE Nifty moved up 64.15 points, or 0.78 per cent.

The 30-share barometer opened higher at 26,919.23 and advanced to recapture the 27,000-mark to touch a high of 27,008.14 in early deals.

However, due to emergence of profit-booking in recent gainers by cautious investors at existing levels, the Sensex slipped into negative zone to hit a low of 26,792.07 before settling marginally lower by 0.11 point, at 26,843.03, still at its highest level since October 28 last year.

The index had gained around 175.18 points in the previous two sessions.

The 50-share Nifty after shuttling between 8,262.00 and 8,209.85, finally closed at 8,220.80, still showing a marginal gain of 1.85 points, or 0.02 per cent.

The release of weak Service PMI also ruled the stock-momentum as Nikkei Service Business Activity index fell from 53.7 in April to 51.0 in May, pointing slower expansion in business activity.
Bharti Airtel took the biggest blow, plunging 2.12 per cent to Rs 358.20, followed by SBI (2.02 per cent) at Rs 196.50.

Lupin, BHEL, GAIL, L&T, Hero MotoCorp, Sun Pharma, Cipla, ITC Ltd, HDFC Ltd, TCS, Tata Steel, Dr Reddy’s, ONGC, HDFC Bank and Adani Ports lost too by up to 1.82 per cent.
Of the 30-pack Sensex, 16 ended with losses, but 14 ended in the green, thus limiting the fall.