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Barometers extend losses; breadth negative

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Key benchmark indices extended losses in mid-morning trade. At 11:28 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was down 346.39 points or 1.12% at 30,586.51. The Nifty 50 index was down 101.85 points or 1.12% at 9,004.40.

Banks and financial stocks tumbled after the RBI governor Shaktikanta Das further extended the loan repayment moratorium for another three months up to 31 August. The EMI payments will restart only once the moratorium time period expires on 31 August.

RBI also announced a 40 basis points rate cut in an off-cycle MPC meeting. The repo rate stands at 4% and the reverse repo rate now stands at 3.35%. The central bank also maintained an 'accommodative' stance.

Das said that the GDP growth in India in 2020-21 is estimated to remain in the negative territory with a pick up in growth impulses in second half. However, these depend on the trajectory of the pandemic.

In the broader market, the S&P BSE Mid-Cap index was off 0.89% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index shed 0.42%.

The market breadth was negative. On the BSE, 685 shares rose and 1167 shares fell. A total of 118 shares were unchanged.

Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) sold shares worth Rs 258.73 crore, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs), were net buyers to the tune of Rs 401.78 crore in the Indian equity market on 21 May, provisional data showed.

Axis Bank (down 4.91%), ICICI Bank (down 4.27%), HDFC (down 4.17%), Bajaj Finance (down 4.08%), IndusInd Bank (down 2.87%) and HDFC Bank (down 1.02%) were major losers.

Asian Paints (up 2.78%), TCS (up 0.96%), Tech Mahindra (up 0.82%), Titan Company (up 0.32%) and Hindustan Unilever (up 0.26%) bucked weak market trend.

Buzzing Index:

The Nifty IT index rose 1.24% to 13,817.80, extending gains for fifth day. The index has added 4.70% in five sessions.

Infosys (up 2.51%), MindTree (up 1.28%), Tech Mahindra (up 0.79%), TCS (up 0.32%), MphasiS (up 0.2%) and Wipro (up 0.05%) advanced.

Hexaware Technologies (down 1.78%), HCL Technologies (down 1.01%), Oracle Financial Services Software (down 0.61%), Persistent Systems (down 0.15%) declined.

Infosys rose 2.57% to Rs 689.25 after a class action lawsuit filed against the IT major and some of its employees in the United States District Court stands dismissed.

In October 2019, a class action lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court against Infosys and certain of its current and former officers. The complaint, which was filed in the Eastern District of New York, was brought on behalf of a class consisting of persons or entities who purchased the company's publicly traded securities between 7 July 2018 and 20 October 2019, and alleged claims for violations of the US federal securities laws. On 21 May 2020, the plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the lawsuit without prejudice.

The Schall Law Firm, a shareholder rights litigation firm based in Los Angeles, had filed the complaint alleging that CEO Salil Parekh skipped standard reviews of large deals to avoid accounting scrutiny.

After unveiling Q3 results in January 2020, Infosys announced conclusion of the independent investigation into allegations contained in the anonymous whistleblower complaints disclosed earlier. The audit committee determined that the allegations are substantially without merit. It concluded that no restatement of previously announced financial statements or other published financial information is warranted.

Stocks in Spotlight:

Reliance Industries (RIL) gained 1.15% to Rs 1,456.55. RIL said that KKR will invest Rs 11,367 crore into Jio Platforms. The transaction values Jio Platforms at an equity value of Rs 4.91 lakh crore and an enterprise value of Rs 5.16 lakh crore. RIL said this is KKR's largest investment in Asia and will translate into a 2.32% equity stake in Jio Platforms on a fully diluted basis.

Over the last one month, leading technology investors, such as Facebook, Silver Lake, Vista, General Atlantic and KKR have announced aggregate investments of Rs 78,562 crore into Jio Platforms. KKR is making the investment from its Asia private equity and growth technology funds.

Emami slipped 0.45% to Rs 209. Competition Commission of India (CCI) on Thursday said it has approved the proposed acquisition of Emami Cement by Nuvoco Vistas Corporation, which is a Nirma promoter group company. The proposed combination pertains to the acquisition of 100% of the total issued and paid up share capital of Emami Cement (ECL), on a fully diluted basis by Nuvoco Vistas Corporation (NVCL).

Global Markets:

Overseas, Asian stocks are trading lower on Friday with Hong Kong's Hang Seng index plunging nearly 6%.

China is poised to impose a new national security law on Hong Kong after months of anti-government protests in the territory. The move has sparked concerns the law will give Beijing more control over Hong Kong and incite further pro-democracy protests.

Details of the draft legislation were announced Friday when China's National People's Congress (NPC) the country's parliament held its annual session. The laws would reportedly ban secession, foreign interference, terrorism and all seditious activities aimed at toppling the central government and any external interference in the former British colony.

In US, Wall Street ended lower on Thursday, on a fresh wave of China-US tensions that raised doubts about the trade deal reached early this year between the world's two largest economies.

The losses also came amid data that showed jobless claims reached 2.4 million for the week that ended on Saturday because of the coronavirus pandemic. The latest data pushed the figure's nine-week total to nearly 39 million, surpassing the 37 million Americans who filed for unemployment insurance during the 18-month Great Recession.

Markets were on the back foot after the Senate passed a bill aiming to delist Chinese companies from American exchanges. The Senate passed a bill aiming to delist Chinese companies from American exchanges. Lawmakers and the White House have repeatedly raised concerns about US-listed firms that may be under Chinese government control or receiving capital from state funds.

That measure was passed after President Donald Trump said in a tweet that the incompetence of China caused this mass Worldwide killing, referring to the coronavirus.

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

First Published: Fri, May 22 2020. 11:28 IST