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Bank stocks edge higher

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Key benchmark indices extended intraday gains in afternoon trade. At 13:17 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was up 64.54 points or 0.24% at 27,302.60. The Nifty 50 index was up 16.55 points or 0.2% at 8,416.90. Indices managed to buck weak trend in Asian counterparts as domestic data showing fall in trade deficit in December extended support amid slight rise in wholesale inflation.

The Sensex rose 73.16 points or 0.26% at the day's high of 27,311.22 in afternoon trade. It lost 65.38 points or 0.24% at the day's low of 27,172.68 in early trade. The Nifty rose 17.65 points or 0.21% at the day's high of 8,418 in afternoon trade. It lost 25.95 points or 0.3% at the day's low of 8,374.40 in early trade.

Trading remained lackluster and within a narrow band near the flat line so far during the session. After hovering in the negative terrain from a flat opening, key indices reversed losses and traded with small gains.

The BSE Mid-Cap index was up 0.32%. The BSE Small-Cap index was up 0.58%. Both these indices outperformed the Sensex. The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was positive. On the BSE, 1,529 shares rose and 1,031 shares declined. A total of 150 shares were unchanged.

Bank stocks edged higher. Among public sector banks, State Bank of India (up 1.24%), IDBI Bank (up 1.09%), Bank of India (up 1.05%), Punjab National Bank (up 0.64%) and Bank of Baroda (up 0.41%) gained. Union Bank of India (down 1.12%) edged lower.

Among private sector banks, RBL Bank (up 1.26%), ICICI Bank (up 0.8%), HDFC Bank (up 0.76%), Yes Bank (up 0.64%) and IndusInd Bank (up 0.06%) edged higher.

Axis Bank was up 1.11%. The bank announced the cut in Marginal Cost of Funds based Lending Rates (MCLR) by 65-70 basis points across the various tenures with effect from 18 January 2017. The announcement was made after market hours on Friday, 13 January 2017.

Capital goods stocks were mostly higher. Havells India (up 2.06%), Crompton Greaves (up 1.24%), BEML (up 0.65%), Siemens (up 0.59%), L&T (up 0.12%) and Bharat Heavy Electricals (up 0.04%) edged higher. ABB India (down 0.65%), Bharat Electronics (down 0.37%) and Thermax (down 0.12%) edged lower.

Tata Motors advanced 2.4% after a foreign brokerage reportedly raised target price on the stock to Rs 650 from Rs 585 earlier on likely significant improvement in both Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) and India businesses. JLR's new model Discovery in second half of current financial year and mid sized Range Rover in the year ending 31 March 2018 (FY 2018) are key products in pipeline, the brokerage reportedly said. Even benefits of significant pound depreciation will flow through into JLR's margin, it added. Sterling pound has depreciated 17% since January 2016.

On the macro front, data showed during market hours today, 16 January 2017 that inflation based on wholesale price index (WPI) rose 3.39% in December 2016 from 3.15% in November 2016. Build up inflation rate in the financial year so far was 4.28% compared to a build up rate of 0.4% in the corresponding period of the previous year.

Another data showed after market hours on Friday, 13 January 2017 that India's exports rose 5.72% to $23.88 billion and imports rose 0.46% to $34.25 billion in December 2016 over December 2015. The trade deficit declined 9.9% to $10.37 billion in December 2016 over December 2015.

Overseas, Asian stocks dropped after the plunge in British pound amid fears of hard exit by UK from the European Union, which Britain voted to leave last June. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite ended 0.3% lower, In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng was down 0.9%.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May will reportedly address a speech tomorrow, 17 January 2017, in which many investors believe she could spell out an end to her country's participation in European Union's single market. May is also expected to elaborate on the UK's negotiation priorities in a speech.

US stocks rose moderately on Friday, 13 January 2017, on the back of quarterly earnings from some of the country's biggest banks, as the Nasdaq Composite index closed at a record high.

US stock markets have been in an updraft since November's presidential election, with the bulk of the gains coming from the financial sector, as investors have bet banks would benefit from deregulation under President-elect Donald Trump's coming administration and an environment that is expected to see rising interest rates.

US financial markets will be closed today, 16 January 2017, for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

In the latest economic data, US retail sales rose 0.6% in December, less than expected, while holiday sales were up a better-than-expected 4%.

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, January 16 2017. 13:14 IST