Sensex consolidates gains, reclaims 33,300 ahead of Fed policy meet
After a strong opening, the BSE Sensex hit a high of 33,354.93, before closing at 33,136.18, up 139.42 points, or 0.42%.business Updated: Mar 21, 2018 18:07 IST
Stocks found firmer ground for the second straight session on Wednesday, with the benchmark BSE Sensex reclaiming the key 33,000-mark, ahead of US Federal Reserve’s policy meet outcome.
Persistent capital inflows by foreign funds and covering-up of short positions by speculators influenced trading sentiment here, brokers said.
The BSE Sensex spurted 139 points to close at 33,136.18, while the broader NSE Nifty rose 30 points to 10,155.25.
Telecom stocks were the session’s biggest gainers, with Bharti Airtel emerging on top in the Sensex pack.
After a strong opening, the BSE 30-share Sensex hit a high of 33,354.93, before closing at 33,136.18, up 139.42 points, or 0.42%. It had gained 73.64 points in the previous session.
The 50-share NSE Nifty, on the other hand, scaled a high of 10,227.30 intra-day, but succumbed to profit-booking to finish at 10,155.25, still up 30.90 points, or 0.31%.
Meanwhile, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares worth Rs 344.16 crore on a net basis, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) also purchased equities to the tune of Rs 731.17 crore on Tuesday, provisional data showed.
“Participants are keen to get cues on future rate hike trajectory (of the US Fed), while hawkish pace of tightening might add volatility in the market.
“If the outcome of FOMC will be in-line with expectation without any underlining caveats, we could have a relief rally in the short-term,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services.
Stocks of sugar companies attracted buyers’ fancy after the government scrapped the 20% export duty on raw and refined sugar to boost shipments as the country is all set to produce record 29.5 million tonnes of the sweetener in the current 2017-18 marketing season.
Balrampur Chini zoomed 8.90%, while Dhampur Sugar rose 0.90%. KCP Sugar climbed 5.28%, Gayatri Sugar gained 2.54% while Ugar Sugar ended flat.
Banking stocks were in good shape on value-buying coupled with short-covering. Major gainers were HDFC Bank, IndusInd Bank and Kotak Bank, rising up to 1.24%.
In the 30-share Sensex pack, Bharti Airtel rose the most at 4.39%, followed by NTPC at 2.11%.
Other winners were L&T, HDFC Ltd, ONGC, Maruti Suzuki, M&M, RIL, Infosys, Wipro, Coal India, HUL and ITC Ltd, rising by up to 1.14%.
Among sectoral indices, telecom jumped the most at 2.36%, followed by realty, capital goods, teck, power, oil & gas, infrastructure, IT, FMCG, PSU, banking and consumer durables.
Metal, healthcare and auto sector indices ended in the negative terrain on profit-booking.
Broader markets too were in better shape, with the BSE small-cap index gaining 0.31% and mid-cap spurting 0.22%.
In the Asian region, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 0.19%, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index shed 0.33% and Singapore rose 0.12%. Financial markets in Japan were shut today for a public holiday.
European indices were trading mixed in their late morning session. Frankfurt’s DAX rose 0.11%, while Paris CAC 40 was down 0.05%. London’s FTSE too fell 0.33% as investors awaited a likely hike in US interest rates