Profit booking, global markets subdue domestic equity indices

Mumbai: Profit booking, along with broadly negative global markets and a weak rupee, subdued the key domestic equity indices during a volatile trade session on Friday.

Market observers pointed out that heavy selling pressure in banking, capital goods and FMCG stocks also depressed the key indices.

However, some of the losses were pared on the back of healthy buying in pharma and IT stocks.

Index-wise, the 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) closed lower by 19.41 points or 0.05 per cent.

The wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) also settled on a flat-to-negative note. It slipped by 0.70 points or 0.01 per cent to close at 10,767.65 points.

The S&P BSE Sensex, which opened at 35,406.47 points, closed at 35,443.67 points, 19.41 points or 0.05 per cent lower from the previous day’s close at 35,463.08 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 35,484.94 points and a low of 35,260 points during the intra-day trade.

“Markets ended flat on Friday after a smart recovery in the late afternoon session. Today’s flat close came after two sessions of healthy gains,” said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research at HDFC Securities.

“Weak global cues capped the gains. Banks fell while IT and Pharma shares gained. Major Asian markets have closed on a negative note. European indices like FTSE 100, CAC 40 and DAX are trading in the red.”

Geojit Financial Services’ Head of Research Vinod Nair said: “Market reversed from low despite weak global sentiment as positive cues on pharma stocks and prospects of government measures on PSU banks supported the market to end flat.”

“Weakening rupee and favourable US FDA outcome on domestic pharma helped to regain positive sentiment in the sector. Volatility in oil price and mixed earnings in the fourth quarter may led the market to stay on the consolidation path.”

On the currency front, the Indian rupee weakened against the US dollar to 67.51, from its previous close at 67.13 per greenback.

Provisional data with exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors sold scrips worth Rs 222.50 crore, while the domestic institutional investors bought stocks worth Rs 459.44 crore.

Sector-wise, the S&P BSE Healthcare index gained 468.38 points, the IT index was higher by 103.09 points and the oil and gas index ended 87.72 points higher.

In contrast, S&P BSE banking index was lower by 71.39 points, capital goods down 44 points and FMCG index slipped by 40.07 points.

The major gainers on the Sensex were Sun Pharma, up 8.13 per cent at Rs 528.20; DrReddy’s Labs, up 4.92 per cent at Rs 2,062.90; Tata Motors DVR, up 3.56 per cent at Rs 186.20; Tata Motors, up 1.56 per cent at Rs 310.05; and State Bank of India, up 1.28 per cent at Rs 272.70 per share.

The top losers were PowerGrid, down 2.12 per cent at Rs 198.50; HDFC, down 1.42 per cent at Rs 1,840.20; Axis Bank, down 1.05 per cent at Rs 536.45; ITC, down 0.98 per cent at Rs 267.85; and Mahindra and Mahindra, down 0.91 per cent at Rs 910.90 per share.