Positive global and domestic cues coupled with strong expectations of further reforms in the upcoming budget led a benchmark index of Indian equities markets to gain 136.48 points or 0.46 percent during the week ended Feb 20. For the week ended Feb 20, the benchmark 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) closed at 29,231.41 points, up 136.48 points or 0.46 percent in the weekly trade.
The barometer index had ended the previous week’s trade at 29,094.93 points (Feb 13). For the previous weekly trade ended Feb 13, the benchmark Sensex was up 377.02 points or 1.31 percent. The barometer index closed at 29,094.93 points Feb 13, while it had ended trade at 28,717.91 points on Feb 6.
Market analysts said the truncated weekly trade was impacted by better than expected wholesale price index numbers. “Markets shut the truncated volatile week on a positive note driven by better than expected wholesale price index numbers,” said Vineeta Mahnot, equity research analyst, Hem Securities.
India’s wholesale price inflation decelerated by 0.39 percent in January from an increase of 5.11 percent in the corresponding period of last fiscal. The deceleration in inflation was attributed to decline in fuel and power prices.
According to Mahnot, Sensex in the week gone by was also supported by largecaps like BHEL, TCS, HDFC, Sesa Sterlite, Mahindra and Mahindra and ITC. “Further, metal and cement companies have bided aggressively for coal blocks with 19 blocks currently on offer in the country’s first mine auction; 14 has already been sold for about Rs.80,000 crores,” Mahnot said.
However, the broader markets outperformed benchmarks with the BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices rising 0.89 percent and 1.66 percent, respectively. “We expect market to remain volatile on account of key event of Railway and Union Budget 2015-16 along with the expiry of February series,” Mahnot added.
Other analysts predicted that going ahead, the pre-budget expectations will start building up and the corresponding sectors may see increased interest. “After a sell off which was witnessed forth night ago markets have recovered on expected lines of budget rally,” said Gaurang Shah, vice president, Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services.
“Flows from (foreign institutional investors) have been on the positive side and some small inflows from the (domestic institutional investors) as well.” On the global front, the european markets were little changed as the euro area finance ministers prepared to meet in Brussels for seeking agreement on Greece’s bailout funding.
“In our sense it is going to be one more agreement that will be temporary like we have seen in the past & once again you may see the Greek ghost reappear in future,” Shah added. Market insiders point out that the next major triggers for the markets in the coming week will be the railway and union budget.
Parliament will commence the budget session on Feb 23. The railway budget will be presented on Feb 26, which will be followed by the economic survey on Feb 27 and the union budget on Feb 28. On Friday, S&P BSE Sensex closed the day’s trade at 29,231.41 points, down 230.86 points or 0.78 percent from its previous day’s close at 29,462.27 points.
The major Sensex gainers on Friday were: BHEL, up 5.18 percent at Rs.275.20; ITC, up 1.75 percent at Rs.395.90; DrReddy’s Lab, up 0.53 percent at Rs.3,401.65; Tata Motors, up 0.36 percent at Rs.578.80; and GAIL, up 0.26 percent at Rs.409.
The losers were: Reliance Industries, down 3.12 percent at Rs.873.25; Tata Power, down 2.66 percent at Rs.85.95; ICICI Bank, down 2.20 percent at Rs.331.15; Bharti Airtel, down 1.98 percent at Rs.349.75; and Infosys, down 1.82 percent at Rs.2,284.30. (IANS)