Mumbai, April 27: A benchmark index for Indian equities, the sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange, closed 260.95 points, or 0.95 percent, down on Monday, to its lowest level in more than three-and-half months. Alysts attributed the decline to lower-than-expected January-March corporate earnings, as also persistent worries over tax matters. Further consolidation by investors also took a toll on the indices. The 30-share Sensex, which opened at 27,565.49 points, closed at 27,176.99 points, down 260.95 points, or 0.95 percent, over the previous day’s close at 27,437.94 points. It had touched a high of 27,567.28 points and a low of 27,141.55 points in the day’s trade.
Each of the last nine trading sessions, excluding the one on last Wednesday, have seen the Sensex log a decline — a fall of nearly 6.5 percent. This apart, the Sensex has also lost 2,850 points, or nearly 9.5 percent, since it touched a record high of 30,024.74 points on March 4.
The wider Nifty of the tiol Stock Exchange also closed 91.45 points or 1.10 percent lower. “The Market has consolidated further — below the last immediate support seen at 8,250 points to 8,300 points. The futures and options expiry, on April 30, and then Fed (US Federal Reserve) meet on April 28-29 are concerning the market,” said Vinod ir of Geojit BNP Paribas.
“While no rate hike is expected from the Fed, the market will be cautious the policy statement. In the meantime, budget session could provide some support to the market, as key bills like the goods and services tax will be discussed,” ir, who heads fundamental research, added. “We expect the Nifty to test levels of 8,800 in the near term, being the 61.8 percent retracement of the recent decline from 9,119 points to 8,219 points. Markets would take further cues from the monetary policy update,” said an end-of-the-day report of Motilal Oswal.
In Monday’s trade, heavy selling pressure was seen in realty, healthcare, oil and gas and consumer durables sectors. Foreign funds remained net sellers to the tune of $114.07 million on Monday. This came over and above the selling of $107.11 million and $231.42 million on Monday and Tuesday last week, and $134.03 million and $44.58 million on Thursday and Friday.
Among the 12 sector-specific indices of the Mumbai bourse, that for realty was down 3.96 percent, healthcare index dropped by 3.21 percent, oil and gas index fell by 2.48 percent and consumer durables index slipped by 2.17 percent. The 100-scrip and 200-scrip indices were down with a relatively higher margin of 1.24 percent and 1.36 percent, respectively, even as mid-cap index was down by around 2.10 percent. Small-cap stocks took a major hit, with the index down 2.85 percent.
The major Sensex gainers on Monday were: Maruti, up 3.02 percent at Rs.3,646.70; Sesa Sterlite, up 2.37 percent at Rs.209.90; and Wipro, up 1.91 percent at Rs.533.10.
The losers were: State Bank of India, down 3.08 percent at Rs.267.15; Dr.Reddy’s, down 3.01 percent at Rs.3,380.95; and BHEL, down 2.87 percent at Rs.226.80.
Among the Asian markets, Japan’s Nikkei went down by 0.18 percent, while Chi’s Shanghai Composite Index gained by 3.06 percent and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng moved up by 1.33 percent. In Europe, London’s FTSE 100 was up by 0.31 percent, France’s CAC 40 went up by 0.52 percent and Germany’s DAX Index was up by 0.92 percent at the closing in the Indian markets. (IANS)