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Market drifts higher in early trade

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Domestic stocks edged higher in early trade boosted by improved industrial production data for December. At 9:23 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was up 177.95 points or 0.49% at 36,331.57. The Nifty 50 index was 41.30 points or 0.38% at 10,872.70.

On the macro front, India's industrial production (base year 2011-12=100) increased at improved pace of 2.4% in December 2018, compared with 0.3% growth recorded in November 2018. The industrial production growth for November 2018 has been revised downwards from 0.5% increase reported provisionally. The data was released by government after market hours yesterday, 12 February 2019.

The all-India general CPI inflation eased to 2.05% in January 2019 (new base 2012=100), compared with 2.11% in December 2018. The corresponding provisional inflation rate for rural area was 1.29% and urban area 2.91% in January 2019 as against 1.50% and 2.91% in December 2018. The core CPI inflation eased to 5.36% in January 2019 compared with 5.66% in December 2018. The data was released by government after market hours yesterday, 12 February 2019.

The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index was up 0.38%. The S&P BSE Small-Cap index was up 0.32%. Both these indices underperformed the Sensex.

The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was strong. On the BSE, 749 shares rose and 397 shares fell. A total of 53 shares were unchanged.

Overseas, Asian stocks nudged higher on Wednesday, lifted by optimism that the United States and China might be able to hammer out a deal to resolve their nearly year-long trade dispute. US stock indexes closed at their highest levels for 2019 on Tuesday after lawmakers reached a tentative deal to prevent a government shutdown and as optimism grew over a potential trade deal between the U.S. and China.

Democratic and Republican lawmakers reached a deal late Monday to avert another government closure after GOP negotiators agreed to a border-security deal that will involve far less money for an extension of the southern U.S. border wall than President Donald Trump has been demanding.

Bilateral trade negotiations entered a second day in Beijing, with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer due to arrive Thursday for more high-level discussions.

Back home, Sun Pharmaceutical Industries (up 2.58%), ITC (up 2.36%) and Power Grid Corporation of India (up 1.6%) edged higher from the Sensex pack.

Tata Power Company rose 0.83%. Tata Power Company announced after trading hours yesterday, 12 February 2019, that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Tata Power Solar Systems, has launched a complete residential rooftop solution in Chandigarh. The residential rooftop solutions are expected to save up to Rs 50,000 annually for 25 years.

Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO) rose 1.03%. HUDCO announced after trading hours yesterday, 12 February 2019, that it has achieved loan sanctions of Rs 15581.24 crore and loan releases of Rs 15534.37 crore (release against previous year sanction is Rs 7942.06 and release against current year sanction is Rs 7592.31), as on 31 January 2019, for the financial year 2018-2019.

L&T Technology Services (LTTS) fell 0.58%. LTTS announced after trading hours yesterday, 12 February 2019, that a client in the telecom & hitech reporting segment, has decided to assume ownership of engineering for their core product. Other engagements with this client continue and LTTS is in discussions to partner with the client in multiple adjacent areas, as they look to invest and expand their business. On account of this development, LTTS' annualized revenue will be impacted by around 4% starting March 2019, with no material change to the EBITDA margin. Notwithstanding the above, LTTS reaffirms its FY2019 revenue guidance and its expectation of mid-teens revenue growth in FY2020 in USD terms.

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

First Published: Wed, February 13 2019. 09:26 IST