Domestic stocks dropped sharply mirroring weakness in global stocks. The barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, lost 572.28 points or 1.59% at 35,312.13, as per the provisional closing data. The Nifty 50 index lost 181.75 points or 1.69% at 10,601.15, as per the provisional closing data. Indices settled lower for third day in a row as investors turned cautious ahead of the state assembly election results.
Investors are cautious in the run-up to the announcement of five state elections' results next week. The outcomes of the five state elections will likely set the tone for the general elections next year. Voting in Rajasthan and Telangana will take place on 7 December 2018 and the counting of votes in all the states will be done on 11 December 2018. Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh and Mizoram were held on 28 November 2018. The election in Chhattisgarh Assembly was held in two phases 12 and 20 November 2018.
Investors are also closely watching the meeting by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). OPEC and other top oil producing countries are set to meet later on Thursday in Austria, with a series of issues on the line. Chief among those is the discussion surrounding crude output policy.
Trading for the day began on a subdued note as the key benchmark indices saw a gap-down opening on negative Asian stocks. Stocks extended initial losses in morning trade. Weakness persisted on the bourses in mid-morning and early afternoon trade. Indices cut losses in afternoon trade. Stocks resumed slide in mid-afternoon trade. Frenzied selling in index pivotals pulled the key indices to intraday low in late trade.
Provisional data released by the stock exchanges showing that local and foreign funds, both, were net sellers of Indian stocks yesterday, 5 December 2018, also weighed on the sentiment. The trading activity on that day showed that the foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) sold shares worth a net Rs 357.82 crore. Domestic institutional investors (DIIs) sold shares worth a net Rs 791.59 crore.
The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was weak. On the BSE, 735 shares rose and 1811 shares fell. A total of 151 shares were unchanged.
Maruti Suzuki India (down 4.63%), Tata Motors (down 4.02%), Yes Bank (down 3.08%), Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone (down 2.74%) and Reliance Industries (down 2.72%) were the major Sensex losers.
Power Grid Corporation of India shed 0.05%. The company has been declared as the successful bidder under tariff based competitive bidding to establish transmission system for evacuation of power from 2 x 660 MW Jawaharpur Thermal Power Project and construction of 400 kV substation at Firozabad along with associated transmission lines' on build, own operate and maintain (BOOM) basis. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 5 December 2018.
The project is an intra-state transmission system of Uttar Pradesh and comprises 765kV, 400kV, 220kV and 132kV lines apart from establishing a new 400/220/132 kV Substation at Firozabad, Uttar Pradesh. The Letter of Intent (LoI) has been received on 5 December 2018. This is the first intra state transmission system project won by Power Grid Corporation of India under tariff based competitive bidding.
Sun Pharmaceutical Industries rose 1.57% to Rs 420.10 on bargain hunting after a recent slide. Shares of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries fell 15.99% in three trading sessions to settle at Rs 413.60 yesterday, 5 December 2018, from its close of Rs 492.30 on 30 November 2018.
Infosys fell 1.94%. Infosys inaugurated its Technology and Innovation Hub in Hartford. Infosys also announced that it has hired more than 7,000 American workers in the last 18 months as part of its ongoing commitment to accelerate the pace of digital innovation for American enterprises. The announcement was made before market hours today, 6 December 2018.
On the political front, state assembly elections are being be closely watched. Polling in Rajasthan and Telangana will take place on 7 December 2018. Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh and Mizoram were held on 28 November 2018. The election to the 90-member Chhattisgarh Assembly was held in two phases 12 and 20 November 2018. Counting of votes will be held across all the five states on 11 December 2018.
Overseas, trading in US index futures indicated that the Dow could slump 462 points at the opening bell today. Asian and European stocks dropped after Canada arrested a top executive of Chinese telecom giant Huawei Technologies at the request of the US, a move that is seen as exacerbating tensions between the US and China.
Meanwhile, Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said economic risks from abroad could be severe. The US Federal Reserve's Beige Book report showed there were concerns about higher tariffs from a widening trade war, rising interest rates and tight labor markets. Trump's get-tough approach to trade was causing rising costs for manufacturers and weaker sales at companies, it said.
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