Sensex ends 67 points lower, Nifty down 22 points; pharma, metal, banking stocks crack

Mumbai: Benchmark equity indices reeled under selling pressure for the seventh straight session Friday as pharma, metal, auto and banking stocks led losses amid sustained foreign fund outflows, muted earnings season and weak global cues.

However, the emergence of buying in power, energy and PSU stocks in the last hour of the session and covering-up of short positions by speculators wiped off most losses.

The 30-share Sensex, after slumping 365 points to hit a low of 35,510.97 intra-day, recouped most of the lost ground on fag-end buying, and finally settled with a modest fall of 67.27 points, or 0.19 percent down at 35,808.95.

The index has now lost over 1,165 points in seven sessions.

The broader NSE Nifty, after shuttling between 10,620.40 and 10,785.75, settled at 10,724.40 points, down by 21.65 points, or 0.20 percent.

Sensex ends 67 points lower, Nifty down 22 points; pharma, metal, banking stocks crack

Representational image. Reuters.

On a weekly basis, the BSE index dropped 737.53 points, or over 2 percent; while NSE Nifty fell 219.20 points, or 2 percent.

The market staged a sharp recovery from the bottom, confirming support for the market at lower levels, said Sunil Sharma, Chief Investment Officer, Sanctum Wealth Management.

Investor sentiment was roiled by weakness in retail sales in the US, and persisting worries around domestic debt and liquidity, he said.

"The mid-cap and large-cap divergence continued, and year-to-date the Nifty 50 is outperforming the Midcap 50 by 4.3 percent," he added.

In stock-specific action, Sun Pharma was the biggest loser among Sensex components, plunging 3.94 percent, followed by Tata Steel falling 3.12 percent.

Other big losers included Vedanta, Hero MotoCorp, Bajaj Finance, SBI, Axis Bank, HDFC, Maruti Suzuki, Yes Bank, M&M, IndusInd Bank, TCS, HUL, Kotak Bank, HDFC Bank, HCL Techand ICICI Bank, losing up to 2.87 percent.

Dr Reddy's stock crashed over 4 percent on massive selling by participants.

On the other hand, NTPC, PowerGrid, Reliance Industries, L&T, Bharti Airtel, Tata Motors, Coal India, Infosys, ITC, Bajaj Auto and Asian Paint ended higher by up to 4.13 percent.

ONGC, too, gained 2.27 percent, after the state-owned company Thursday reported a 65 percent jump in its third-quarter net profit as higher prices made up for a fall in oil output.

Sector-wise, the BSE metal index emerged worst performer, tumbling 2.32 percent, followed by healthcare down 2.27 percent, auto (1.21 percent), bankex (0.69 percent), FMCG (0.44 percent), consumer durables (0.29 percent), IT (0.22 percent), realty (0.18 percent) and teck (0.12 percent.

However, power index gained the most, rising 2.17 percent, oil and gas (1.44 percent), infrastructure (1.09 percent), PSU 0.57 percent and capital goods (0.42 percent).

A similar trend was also extended to the broader markets with the mid-cap index falling 1.18 percent, and small-cap index shedding 0.83 percent.

On the macro front, rising global crude prices dented the rupee, which depreciated by another 28 paise to 71.44 against the dollar intra-day.

The Brent crude futures, the international benchmark, advanced to USD 65.10 per barrel, their highest level in nearly three months.

Elsewhere in Asia, Hong Kong's Hang Seng dropped 2.06 percent, Shanghai Composite Index fell 1.37 percent, Kospi was down 12.34 percent, Japan's Nikkei shed 1.13 percent and Singapore's Straits Times declined 0.54 percent.

Among European markets were in somewhat mixed form in their early deals with the Paris CAC 40 rising 0.24 percent; while Frankfurt DAX slipped 0.46 percent, and the London's FTSE was almost flat.

The US Dow Jones Industrial Average also ended 0.41 percent lower on Thursday.

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Updated Date: Feb 15, 2019 17:34:11 IST

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