After witnessing yet another record week with the key indices zooming higher to new peaks, the Indian equity markets came under the impact of global political turmoil and pared gains during the week ended Friday.
In the past week, the barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE surged by 276.77 points or 0.92 per cent to close at 30,464.92 points, while the wider 51-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) rose by 27 points or 0.29 per cent to wind up the week's trade at 9,427.90 points.
"Having commenced the week on a positive note, the Nifty lost momentum after touching the historic peak of 9,533 in Wednesday's trade, even as selling pressure dragged the index towards 9,400 levels. Thursday witnessed one of the worst falls for the indices in the last five months," said Vijay Singhania, Director, Trade Smart Online.
Mid-week, the key equity indices crossed their psychologically significant levels and shot up to new closing and intra-day highs, which are also their new 52-week highs.
On May 17, the NSE Nifty recorded a new closing high of 9,525.75 points, and the BSE Sensex of 30,658.77 points. On the same day, the Nifty scaled a record intra-day high of 9,532.60 points.
On May 18, the BSE Sensex touched a new high of 30,712.35 points during the intra-day trade, breaking its earlier record high of 30,692.45 points intra-day on May 17.
"The sentiment of the markets across the globe got spooked as concerns rose over the political uncertainty in the US, which may derail the policy agenda that helped push global equities to records. Doubts about President Donald Trump's ability to implement market-friendly policies also ruined the sentiments of the market participants at home," D.K. Aggarwal, Chairman and Managing Director, SMC Investments and Advisors, told IANS.
"This week India moved a step ahead in adopting the Goods and Services Tax (GST), with the GST Council fixing the rates for 1,211 items. So far, the Indian markets were supported by a huge gush of liquidity from both domestic as well as global investors."
Figures from the National Securities Depository (NSDL) revealed that foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) invested in equities worth Rs 3867.67 crore, or $602.98 million, during May 15-19.
Provisional figures from the stock exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold stocks worth Rs 987.06 crore, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) purchased scrip worth Rs 602.98 crore during the week.
On commodities, Singhania said: "Gold prices soared during the week on the back of a political storm in the US. After showing some resistance initially, base metals were eventually weighed down by weakness in global equities."
"Oil markets remain relatively resilient with traders looking forward to OPEC (Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) meeting on May 25 where expectations call for an extension of production cuts till early part of next year," he added.
Apart from global uncertainties, depreciation of the rupee against the US dollar pressurised the market sentiments at higher levels, according to Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls.
During the week, the Indian rupee weakened by 34-35 paise to 64.64-65 against the US dollar from last week's close of 64.30.
"Sentiments got some support with Indian Meteorological department's statement that the southwest monsoon will hit Kerala on May 30, two days ahead of schedule," said Desai.
"Most banking stocks faced resistance at higher levels due to profit booking and traded down. Bench mark FMCG index NiftyFMCG witnessed strong upside during the week but failed to hold the gains in the end."
Sectorwise, the FMCG, metals and PSU banks were the top gainers, while the media, realty and energy indices fell.
The top weekly Sensex gainers were: Tata Steel (up 12.05 per cent at Rs 489.40), Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) (up 6.24 per cent at Rs 2,506.80), Lupin (up 4.84 per cent at Rs 1,314.90), ITC (up 4.23 per cent at Rs 285.90) and State Bank of India (SBI) (up 3.70 per cent at Rs 308.15).
The losers were: ONGC (down 2.57 per cent at Rs 180), Reliance Industries (down 2.39 per cent at Rs 1,318.50), Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M) (down 2.39 per cent at Rs 1,333.10), Adani Ports (down 2.23 per cent at Rs 349.20), and Gail (down 1.90 per cent at Rs 401.10).
(Porisma P. Gogoi can be contacted at email@example.com)
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