Sensex Closes 610 Points Higher, Nifty Settles at 10,421
Mumbai Mar 12: The Bombay Stock Exchange benchmark index Sensex surged 610 points to close at 33,917 on Monday while the NSE Nifty settled 194 points higher at 10,421, ahead of retail inflation and factory output data scheduled to be released later in the day. Banking, auto, metal, energy, FMCG and IT stocks finished the day with gains of around 1-2 percent. Gains in the domestic markets tracked a rally in global markets after a US jobs report assuaged fears around inflation and faster rate hikes.
- Forty-seven stocks on the 50-scrip Nifty ended the session on a positive note.
- On the Nifty, Bharti Airtel, Vedanta, ITC and IOC closed with gains of 4-5 percent.
- Retail inflation, determined by CPI or Consumer Price Index, is expected to ease to a four-month low in February on softening prices for vegetables and other perishable foods, but will probably stay above the Reserve Bank of India’s target, a Reuters poll showed.
- A firm trend in other Asian markets and higher opening in European bourses, following a good show by Wall Street on Friday, lifted investors’ mood in domestic markets.
- Global shares rallied after US data showed non-farm payrolls jumped from last month, but annual growth in average hourly earnings slowed after a spike in January, easing fears of inflation and speculation that the Federal Reserve would project four rate hikes instead of the current three. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 1.3 percent higher, for the third session of gains.
- “There is a little bit of positivity after Asian markets opened on a positive footing on stronger US markets,” said Anand James, chief market strategist at Geojit Financial Services.
- “Another point of view is that it (market) bounced off its 200-day moving average, which is attracting some bargain buying at the bottom. The first test of this critical level was seen last week. Also, markets are looking at firmer inflation numbers, especially in the backdrop of other central banks also taking a tighter stance on monetary policy. So, upside looks to be little restrained ahead of key macro numbers,” he said. The S&P Nifty index, which has been on a downswing since the beginning of February, found support at its 200-day simple moving average last week.
- Financial stocks, except those of some public sector lenders, gained. HDFC finished 2 percent higher and HDFC Bank closed up 0.9 percent. Punjab National Bank closed 1 percent lower while SBI finished the day with a mild loss of 0.15 percent. Among other state-run banks, IDBI Bank fell 8 percent and Andhra Bank settled 7 percent lower.
- IT stocks also gained, with Infosys Ltd advancing 1.9 percent.
- Cigarette makers such as ITC Ltd rose after the GST Council left taxes levied on cigarettes intact at its meeting on Saturday. ITC closed with a gain of 4 percent.