Sensex, Nifty in green after weak start in opening trade; HCL Tech, Hero MotoCorp, L&T among major winners

  • Sensex dropped over 70 points in opening trade as investors chose to stay cautious ahead of the Union Budget amid weak global cues

  • The rupee declined by 5 paise to 71.31 against the US dollar in early trade on Friday as spread of a deadly new virus from China kept investors edgy

  • Asian shares held their ground on Friday as trade slowed for the Lunar New Year, despite investors fears that a new coronavirus in China could spread faster as millions of people would be travelling over the week-long holiday.

After the Sensex dropped over 70 points or 0.17 percent lower at 41,314.45 and the broader NSE was trading 17.85 points or 0.15 percent, down at 12,162.50, the markets recouped on Friday. Sensex went up by 161.42 points or 0.39 percent at 41,547.82. Nifty rose 52.10 points or 0.43 percent at 12,232.45 at 10.25 AM. HCL Tech was the major gainer at 1.51 percent followed by Hero MotoCorp, L&T, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, Titan among others.

Sensex dropped over 70 points in opening trade as investors chose to stay cautious ahead of the Union Budget amid weak global cues.

The 30-share BSE index was trading 71.95 points or 0.17 percent lower at 41,314.45. Similarly, the broader NSE was trading 17.85 points, or 0.15 percent, down at 12,162.50. In the previous session, Sensex settled 271.02 points, or 0.66 percent, higher at 41,386.40. Likewise, the Nifty closed 73.45 points, or 0.61 percent, down at 12,180.35, according to a PTI report.

Top losers in the Sensex pack included PowerGrid, Kotak Bank, Infosys, TCS, Tata Steel and Bharti Airtel.

On the other hand, Asian Paints, Titan, Bajaj Auto, RIL, Sun Pharma, L&T and ICICI Bank were trading on a positive note.

According to analysts, a cautious trend remain in the near-term since a lot has been factored in the market about budget wish list and revival in earnings growth, while the start to Q3 result is below par.

 Sensex, Nifty in green after weak start in opening trade; HCL Tech, Hero MotoCorp, L&T among major winners

Representational image. Reuters.

Bourses in Hong Kong and Japan were trading on a tepid note, while markets in China, Taiwan and South Korea were closed for a holiday on Friday.

Rupee falls 5 paise against US dollar in opening trade

The rupee declined by 5 paise to 71.31 against the US dollar in early trade on Friday as spread of a deadly new virus from China kept investors edgy, according to a PTI report.

Besides, rise in crude oil prices and lower opening in the domestic equity market also impacted the rupee movement, forex dealers said.

However, fresh foreign fund inflows supported the Indian currency, they added.

At the interbank foreign exchange market, the rupee opened weak at 71.34, but it recovered some lost ground to touch 71.30 against the US dollar in morning trade.

The domestic currency had settled at 71.26 against the American currency on Thursday.

According to reports, coronavirus infection has killed at least 25 people, while the number of confirmed cases has increased to 830.

Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, rose 0.06 percent to $62.08 per barrel.

The BSE benchmark Sensex was trading 71.95 points or 0.17 percent lower at 41,314.45. Similarly, the broader NSE was trading 17.85 points, or 0.15 percent, down at 12,162.50.

The dollar index, which gauges the greenback's strength against a basket of six currencies, inched up 0.02 percent to 97.70.

Foreign institutional investors bought equities worth Rs 1,352.13 crore on a net basis on Thursday, provisional exchange data showed.

The 10-year Indian government bond yield was at 6.60 percent.

Asian shares hold ground as China virus fear spreads

Asian shares held their ground on Friday as trade slowed for the Lunar New Year, despite investors fears that a new coronavirus in China could spread faster as millions of people would be travelling over the week-long holiday, according to a Reuters report.

Markets had steadied overnight, as investors took some solace from the World Health Organisation labelling the outbreak an emergency for China, where 25 people have died and at least 800 have been infected, but not, as yet, for the rest of the world.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.1 percent, while Japan's Nikkei .N225 eased a marginal 0.05 percent and Australian stocks added 0.3 percent.

Trade in Asia is already slowing down for the Lunar New Year holiday, with financial markets in China, Taiwan and South Korea closed on Friday.

“Investors are worried that the outbreak of coronavirus will dampen consumption in China when the Chinese economy has been already cooling down,” said Yasuo Sakuma, chief investment officer at Libra Investments.

Indeed, National Australia Bank’s research team tentatively estimated China’s GDP growth for the first quarter could be hit by around 1 percent point by this deadly coronavirus outbreak.

“The impact on Chinese growth could be significant given the outbreak coincides with the Chinese New Year,” said Tapas Strickland, NAB’s director of economics.

“Measures to isolate the outbreak has meant 26 million people in cities or near urban areas are in lockdown or have limited travel. New Year festivities are also curbed in Beijing and Macau.”

The stance taken by WHO over the epidemic provided enough relief for US markets to advance further.

The Nasdaq Composite rose 0.2 percent to a record closing high, while the S&P 500 added 0.1 percent and the Dow Jones Industrial Average eased 0.1 percent.

In the currency market, the concerns about the virus supported the safe-haven yen.

The Japanese currency traded at 109.47 per dollar, having risen to a two-week high of 109.26 yen on Thursday.

The euro fell to a seven-week low versus the dollar of $1.1036 overnight after the European Central Bank left its policy rates unchanged but President Christine Lagarde struck a slightly dovish tone than some had expected.

The common currency last stood at $1.1053, down a marginal 0.05 percent on the day.

The offshore yuan softened to 6.932 per dollar, one day after hitting a 2-1/2 week low of 6.942 yuan.

Coronavirus fears continued to weigh on commodity prices.

Oil prices remained under pressure on the growing concern that fuel demand will weaken as the spread of a respiratory virus from China dents travel and darkens the economic outlook.

Brent crude futures shed as much as 0.16 percent to below $62 a barrel in early Asian trade on Friday, its lowest since 4 December, after falling 1.9 percent the previous session.

US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures declined as much as 0.22 percent to $55.47 and were on course for a 5 percent fall for the week.

Elsewhere, copper prices fell to their lowest in more than six weeks overnight.

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

Updated Date: Jan 24, 2020 10:51:24 IST