Market Wrap, Feb 16: Here’s all that happened in the markets today

A sharp downtick in private bank and IT stocks dragged the domestic indices lower on Tuesday even as PSU banks and metal stocks continued their northward march. From its fresh record high level of 52,517, touched earlier today, the S&P BSE Sensex tanked 650 points to hit a low of 51,864. The index, however, settled at 52,104 levels, down 50 points or 0.1 per cent.

The NSE’s Nifty50, on the other hand, managed to hold the 15,300 level and ended at 15,313, down 1.25 points or 0.01 per cent. The index hit a fresh lifetime high of 15,432 in the morning trade today.

PowerGrid, ONGC, NTPC, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Maruti Suzuki, and Reliance Industries, up between 1 per cent and 6 per cent, were the top gainers on the Sensex while Tata Steel, Hindalco, and Adani Ports were the additional gainers on the Nifty index. On the downside, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, Infosys, Eicher Motors, SBI, HUL, and TCS nursed losses on these indices.

The broader ended higher today with the S&P BSE MidCap and SmallCap indices settling 0.2 per cent and 0.43 per cent up, respectively.

On the sectoral front, the Nifty IT index turned out to be the worst performer, down 1.6 per cent at close. That apart, the Nifty Bank index (down 0.8 per cent) and the Nifty Private Bank and FMCG indices (down 0.7 per cent each) were the other losers.

On the contrary, the Nifty Metal index ended about 3 per cent higher today as metal prices rose on improved global demand. Individually, Jindal Steel, Tata Steel, Hindalco, SAIL, and NMDC ended up to 7 per cent higher today.

That apart, the Nifty PSU Bank index ended 1.6 per cent higher amid report that the government has shortlisted Bank of Maharashtra, Bank of India, Indian Overseas Bank and the Central Bank of India for privatisation. Shares of these banks were locked in the 20 per cent upper circuit at close.

Among other individual stocks that remained in focus were that of Brookfield REIT. Shares of the company got listed at Rs 279 on the NSE today, implying a premium of 1.45 per cent over its issue price of Rs 275 per share. The shares settled 2 per cent lower against the issue price, at Rs 269 on the NSE.

Moreover, shares of Varun Beverages skid 4.6 per cent in the intra-day session and hit a low of Rs 899.6 apiece on the BSE amid profit-booking by investors on the company’s improved performance in the December quarter. The company narrowed its loss in Q4CY21 to Rs 7.2 crore compared with a loss of Rs 54 crore in the previous year period.

In another development, market regulator Sebi said today that it has settled the Axis Bank-United India Insurance case under the Settlement Process and it shall not initiate any enforcement action against Axis Bank.

Meanwhile, rating agency Crisil has said that the stressed assets of finance companies in India are expected to reach 6-7.5 per cent of their overall assets under management by March 2021. In absolute terms, the tally works out Rs 1.5-1.8 trillion. The maximum pain is expected to be in the real estate segment. The Nifty Financial Services index ended 0.4 per cent lower today while the Nifty Realty index ended 0.3 per cent up. Both these sectors shall remain in focus in Wednesday’s session.

Moving on to the primary market action.

The initial public offer of Nureca has been subscribed nearly 14 times till 4:45 pm on the second day of the issue, while that of RailTel has been subscribed 2.5 times so far on day 1.

Global markets

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan shot up 0.62 per cent, while Japan’s Nikkei rose 1.4 per cent to a 30-year high.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng Index rose 1.4 per cent to hit a 32-month high, while Australia’s S&P/ASX200 gained 0.7 per cent for the session.

In Europe, the pan-European STOXX 600 was up 0.2 per cent while Germany’s DAX traded flat.

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