Market Wrap, March 19: Here’s all that happened in the markets today

Images on investors’ trading screens turned around 180 degrees by the end of the session on Friday as bulls fought back to lift indices over a per cent higher. A drop in the US Treasury yield and a GDP growth upgrade by Moody’s for India helped the snap 5-day losing streak.

Tracking sluggishness in the global markets, the domestic equity opened in a sea of red with the frontline indices dropping over a per cent. The dip was, however, quickly bought-into, pushing in the positive territory in less than 120 minutes into the trade.

Mood in the global markets changed after the US Treasury yields slipped to 1.5 per cent from Thursday’s high of 1.74 per cent. Back home, Moody’s Analytics said India’s economy is likely to grow by 12 per cent in CY2021 following a 7.1 per cent contraction last year as near-term prospects have turned more favourable.

Consequently, bulls reigned on Dalal Street for the first time in six days riding on the back of FMCG and metal counters. Both, the Nifty FMCG and Metal indices, ended over 2 per cent higher each, followed by gains in the Nifty Pharma and PSU Bank indices, up over 1 per cent. Other indices settled with less than a per cent gains, while the Nifty Realty index ended in the red, down 0.7 per cent.

Among the key headline indices, the 50-share barometer on the NSE closed above the 14,700-mark at 14,744 levels, up 186 points or 1.28 per cent. The 30-share benchmark Sensex, on the other hand, advanced 642 points, or 1.3 per cent, to end at 49,858 levels. In the intra-day deals, the Sensex and the Nifty touched 50,003 and 14,788, respectively jumping 1,416 and 350 points from day’s low.

Individually, HUL, Power Grid, JSW Steel, Tata Steel, NTPC, UPL, Reliance Industries, Divis Labs, Gail, and UltraTech Cement were the top gainers on the Nifty, while L&T, Coal India, Tech M, Bajaj Auto, Titan, and ONGC ended as the top laggards.

In the broader markets, the S&P BSE MidCap and SmallCap indices closed 1.35 per cent and 0.4 per cent higher, respectively.

Among the stocks that remained outperformers, shares of Indo Count Industries advanced 12 per cent to Rs 128 on the BSE on Friday after the textile company announced expansion and modernisation projects of existing capacities with a capex of Rs 200 crore. The shares settled over 9 per cent higher at Rs 124 apiece.

That apart, shares of Aarti Drugs advanced 15 per cent to Rs 785 on the BSE after its board approved buyback worth Rs 60 crore at Rs 1,000 per share. The board of directors has fixed April 1 as the record date for ascertaining the shareholder who will participate in the proposed buyback. The stock of the firm ended nearly 10 per cent higher on the BSE.

Debuting at the bourses, shares of Easy Trip Planners got listed at Rs 212.25, commanding a premium of 13.5 per cent against the issue price of Rs 187 per share on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) on Friday. On the BSE, the stock opened at Rs 206, up 10 per cent against its issue price. The stock, however, closed Rs 206 on the NSE, up 10 per cent against the issue price.

On the downside, Shares of Future group companies were locked in their respective lower circuit, with no buyers seen on the counters, after the Delhi High Court upheld the Emergency Award passed against the $3.4-billion Future-Reliance deal.

Future Retail, Future Lifestyle Fashions, Future Enterprises, and Future Consumer were locked in the 10 per cent lower circuit, while Future Supply Chain Solutions and Future Market Networks were frozen in 5 per cent lower circuit on the BSE.

In the primary market, the three-day IPO of Nazara Technologies and Suryoday SFB got subscribed by 175 times and 2.35 times till about 4 PM on the last day of the issue.

Global markets

Asian Markets were largely unsettled by the Bank of Japan’sdecision to slightly widen the target band for 10-year yields and tweak its buying of assets. A decision to confine purchases to only TOPIX-linked ETFs knocked Japan’s Nikkei down 1.6%.

South Korea lost 1% while Chinese blue chips shed 1.9%.

In Europe, stocks declined after France imposed fresh regional lockdowns to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

The pan-European STOXX 600 fell 0.4%, while France’s CAC 40 dropped 0.6%.

Futures for Dow Jones, S&P 500, and Nasdaq were up in the range of 0.2 per cent to 0.6 per cent, indicating flat to positive start on Wall Street later today.

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