Key equity indices sharply pared losses in early afternoon trade, with the Nifty recovering from 11,500 levels. At 12:20 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was down 37.31 points or 0.1% at 38,575.59. The Nifty 50 index was down 15.55 points or 0.13% at 11,543.75.
Broader markets outperformed Sensex. The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index was up 0.2%. The S&P BSE Small-Cap index was up 0.2%.
The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, turned positive from negative. On the BSE, 1109 shares rose and 1039 shares fell. A total of 106 shares were unchanged.
Bajaj Finance was up 6.11% to Rs 3623.25. The company reported that on a consolidated basis, its customer franchise rose by 30.38% to approximately 36.9 million customers in Q1 June 2019 as compared to 28.3 million customers in Q1 June 2018, adding a total of 2.5 million new customers during the quarter. The company further reported that new loans booked during Q1 June 2019 were 7.3 million as compared to 5.6 million in Q1 June 2018. Further, the assets under management (AUM) stood at approximately Rs 129,000 crore as in Q1 June 2019 as compared to Rs 91,287 crore in Q1 June 2018 and Rs 115,888 crore as in Q4 March 2019.
Shares of most public sector oil marketing companies (PSU OMCs) gained as Brent crude oil price declined. Indian Oil Corporation (up 4.37%), Hindustan Petroleum Corporation (up 1.85%) and Bharat Petroleum Corporation (up 0.58%) gained.
In the commodities market, Brent crude for September 2019 settlement was down 10 cents at $64.01 a barrel. The contract fell 12 cents or 0.18% to settle at $64.11 a barrel in the previous trading session.
Metal stocks were mixed. Jindal Steel & Power (down 1.22%), Hindalco Industries (down 1.06%), Hindustan Copper (down 0.91%), Hindustan Zinc (down 0.7%) and Vedanta (down 0.52%) declined. NMDC (up 1.96%), Steel Authority of India (up 1.08%), National Aluminium Company (up 0.84%) and Tata Steel (up 0.1%) edged higher.
Dr. Reddy's Laboratories was up 0.44% to Rs 2607.2. The pharma major announced the launch of the over-the-counter store brand equivalent of Mucinex D Extended Release Tablets in the U.S. Markets. The company announced the launch of Guaifenesin 600 mg and Pseudoephedrine HCI 60 mg and Guaifenesin 1200 mg and Pseudoephedrine HCI 120 mg-in the United States market, as approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Dr. Reddy's OTC Guaifenesin 1200 mg and Pseudoephedrine HCI 120 mg is available in 24-count packages. Dr. Reddy's OTC Guaifenesin 600 mg and Pseudoephedrine HCI 60 mg is available in 18- and 36-count packages
The NSE's India VIX, a gauge of market's expectation of volatility over the near term, fell 2.45% at 13.5125.
On the options front, Nifty option chain for 25 July 2019 expiry showed a maximum call open interest (OI) of 30.78 lakh contracts at the 12000 strike price. Maximum put OI of 17.23 lakh contracts was seen at 11500 strike price. Options data suggested a trading range for Nifty will be between 11,500 and 12,000.
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