Budgetary expectations lift Indian equities (Roundup)

Mumbai, Jan 23 (IANS) Hopes of budgetary incentives and healthy buying in metal, automobile and oil and gas sectors lifted the Indian equities markets on Monday.

However, profit booking at higher levels and foreign fund outflows capped gains.

The equity markets started the week’s trade session on a volatile note as the India Volatility Index (VIX) rose to 15.90 from 15.79 recorded on Friday.

The wider 51-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) rose by 42.15 points or 0.50 per cent, to 8,391.50 points.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 26,990.93 points, closed at 27,117.34 points — up 82.84 points or 0.31 per cent from the previous close at 27,034.50 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 27,167.79 points and a low of 26,963.58 points during the intra-day trade.

The BSE market breadth was tilted in favour of the bulls — with 1,579 advances and 1,129 declines.

In terms of the broader markets, the BSE mid-cap index rose by 0.48 per cent, while the BSE small-cap index was up 0.47 per cent.

On last Friday, the benchmark indices were dragged lower by disappointing quarterly results and a weak rupee.

The NSE Nifty receded by 85.75 points or 1.02 per cent, to 8,349.35 points, while the BSE Sensex was down 274.10 points or 1.00 per cent.

According to Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls, late buying activity managed to lift the equities markets.

“The top performing sector was metals, which has given decent gains since last year, and we believe the correction and slowdown in commodities are over and now we are witnessing a bull rally in commodity, which is helping metal sector to perform,” Desai told IANS.

“Earnings season so far is mixed with large-cap giving dismissal earnings and many mid-cap companies posting better-than-expected results.”

Market observers pointed out that value buying resurfaced ahead of the Union Budget, as it is widely expected to “bring in” economic sops to ease the impact of demonetisation.

“This optimism also allowed banks to shed asset quality worries, while IT stocks, which were on the back foot last week, ahead of (Donald) Trump’s speech, shed the cautionary stance and swung back too,” Anand James, Chief Market Strategist, Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services was quoted as saying in a statement.

“However, a bit of volatility was also seen as near month derivatives expire a day early.”

The Futures and Options (F&O) expiry for the month of January has been preponed to Wednesday due to the Republic Day holiday on Thursday.

In contrast, the Indian rupee closed on a flat-to-negative note at 68.20 against a US dollar from its previous close of 68.19 to a greenback.

In addition, foreign funds off-loaded their stock holding in the Indian markets.

The provisional data with exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold stocks worth Rs 288.80 crore, while the domestic institutional investors (DIIs) purchased scrip worth Rs 519.99 crore.

Sector-wise,the S&P BSE metal index surged by 290.46 points, followed by the automobile index, which increased by 147.68 points, and the oil and gas index, which rose by 143.30 points.

On the other hand, the S&P BSE capital goods index slipped by 80.51 points, the healthcare index fell by 77.29 points and the telecom index inched down by 2.26 points.

Major Sensex gainers on Monday were: Gail, up 2.41 per cent at Rs 470.95; HDFC, up 1.77 per cent at Rs 1,258.75; Tata Motors, up 1.72 per cent at Rs 532.15; ITC, up 1.57 per cent at Rs 259.45; and Tata Steel, up 1.55 per cent at Rs 461.65.

Major Sensex losers were: ICICI Bank, down 2.26 per cent at Rs 257.45; Larsen and Toubro (L&T), down 1.49 per cent at Rs 1,393.50; Axis Bank, down 1.20 per cent at Rs 445.10; Sun Pharma, down 1.00 per cent at Rs 634.50; and Reliance Industries, down 0.95 per cent at Rs 1,015.95.