Global cues, RIL stock surge, push equities markets higher

Mumbai, Feb 22: Despite a volatile trade session, the Indian equities markets maged to close on a positive note, as healthy global cues buoyed investors sentiments. Besides, an exponential rise in Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) stock prices, a day after Reliance Jio announced its tariff plans along with buying support in the oil and gas, and banking sectors pushed the key domestic indices higher.

However, outflow of foreign funds and caution ahead of crucial economic events capped gains. Investors were anxious before the release of US Fed’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) and the Reserve Bank of India’s Monetary Policy Committee’s (MPC) minutes as well as derivatives expiry.

The wider 51-scrip Nifty of the tiol Stock Exchange (NSE) rose by 19.05 points or 0.21 per cent to 8,926.90 points.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 28,822.40 points, closed at 28,864.71 points — up 103.12 points or 0.36 per cent, from the previous close at 28,761.59 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 28,963.52 points and a low of 28,789.30 points during the intra-day trade.

In contrast, the BSE market breadth was tilted in favour of the bears — 1,777 declines and 1,085 advances.

Similarly, in terms of broader markets, both the BSE mid-cap and small-cap index fell by 0.58 per cent each. On Tuesday, the benchmark indices touched their new closing highs of 2017 on the back of an announcement of a share buy-back by IT major Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and healthy buying support in the banking sector.

The NSE Nifty rose by 28.65 points or 0.32 per cent to close at 8,907.85 points, and the BSE Sensex was up 100.01 points or 0.35 per cent at 28,761.59 points.

“Major Asian markets ended on a positive note, barring the Nikkei index. European indices like FTSE 100, DAX and CAC 40 too traded higher,” Deepak Jasani, Head – Retail Research, HDFC Securities, told IANS.

According to other market observers, strong performance of Reliance Industries was one of the main reasons for the market to end in the positive territory.

“It was Reliance Industries’ day under the sun. The stock zoomed after the company announced that it will be stopping its free service for its telecom venture Reliance Jio,” Vijay Singhania, founder and Director of brokerage firm Trade Smart Online, told IANS.

On the currency front, the Indian rupee weakened by four paise to 66.97 against a US dollar from its previous close of 66.93 to a greenback. In terms of investments, the provisiol data with exchanges showed that foreign institutiol investors (FIIs) sold stocks worth Rs 259.21 crore, whereas the domestic institutiol investors (DIIs) purchased scrip worth Rs 917.97 crore.

Commenting on the sector-specific movement, Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls, said: “IT, banking, pharma, auto, oil-gas and textile sector stocks traded with mixed sentiments, whereas aviation sector stocks traded firm tracking bearish crude oil prices.”

“Media-entertainment, FMCG, cement and power sector stocks traded with bearish sentiments due to selling pressure.” Sector-wise, the S&P BSE oil and gas index augmented by 238.09 points, followed by the energy index, which surged by 145.59 points, and the banking index, which edged up by 56.37 points.

On the other hand, the S&P BSE consumer durables index dipped by 187.73 points, the IT index slipped by 175.24 points, and the healthcare index edged down by 93.61 points.

Major Sensex gainers on Tuesday were: Reliance Industries, up 10.97 per cent at Rs 1,207.65; Axis Bank, up 3.93 per cent at Rs 524.45; Asian Paints, up 2.92 per cent at Rs 1,020.05; Coal India, up 2.63 per cent at Rs 328.00; and Hero MotoCorp, up 1.16 per cent at Rs 3,164.80.

Major Sensex losers were: NTPC, down 3.36 per cent at Rs 166.60; Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), down 2.22 per cent at Rs 2,409.55; Power Grid, down 2.19 per cent at Rs 201.30; Infosys, down 2.08 per cent at Rs 991.85; and Tata Steel, down 1.49 per cent at Rs 483.30. (IANS)