Key benchmark indices continued trading in a range with modest gains in early afternoon trade. At 12:28 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was up 121.49 points or 0.31% at 39,018.20. The Nifty 50 index was up 37.45 points or 0.32% at 11,625.80.
The broader market was trading higher. The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index was up 0.36%. The S&P BSE Small-Cap index was up 0.05%.
The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was negative. On the BSE, 1021 shares rose and 1171 shares fell. A total of 130 shares were unchanged.
Most auto shares advanced. Escorts (up 1.19%), Maruti Suzuki India (up 0.97%), Eicher Motors (up 0.51%), Bajaj Auto (up 0.43%) and Hero MotoCorp (up 0.08%) rose. TVS Motor Company was down 1.55%.
Tata Motors was up 4.32%. According to media reports, Jaguar Land Rover Automotive Plc won a 500 million-pound ($626 million) loan guarantee from the U.K. government. The guarantee to JLR by the U.K. Export Finance agency was granted to support the design, manufacture and export of electric cars.
JLR, a unit of Tata Motors, will invest hundreds of millions of pounds transforming its Castle Bromwich site near Birmingham after previously committing to electrified options of all new models from 2020. The first electric vehicle off the production line will be the ninth generation of Jaguar's flagship XJ saloon.
Mahindra & Mahindra was down 0.97% after a global brokerage reportedly downgraded its rating on the stock to 'sell' from 'underperform', citing weak earnings growth. The firm has slashed its target price to Rs 590 from Rs 690 per share.
Ashok Leyland was down 0.82%. The company's plant situated at Pantnagar will remain closed from 16 July 2019 to 24 July 2019 (both days inclusive), owning to weak demand and outlook for the industry. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 15 July 2019.
Greaves Cotton was up 3.25%. The company after market hours yesterday, 15 July 2019, announced the acquisition of 25.73 lakh equity shares in its subsidiary Ampere Vehicles by way of investment through primary and secondary purchase for a total consideration of Rs. 38.49 crore. With this investment, Greaves has increased its holding in Ampere to 81.23% from 67.34%. The investment is part of Greaves' long-term growth strategy to deliver superior products & services in last-mile e-Mobility space, which is seeing significant interest from various quarters.
Page Industries was up 0.42%. The company after market hours yesterday, 15 July 2019, said that Cartica Capital has decreased its stake to 2.98% from 5.01% in the company. Cartica Capital sold 2.26 crore shares or 2.03% stake via open market on Friday, 12 July 2019.
TV18 Broadcast was up 0.21%. The company during market hours today reported net profit of Rs 23.17 crore in Q1 June 2019 compared with net loss of Rs 6.82 crore in Q1 June 2018. Total income rose 12.30% to Rs 1230.51 crore in Q1 June 2019 over Q1 June 2018.
Most FMCG shares rose. Tata Global Beverages (up 1.87%), Hindustan Unilever (up 1.74%), GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare (up 1.7%), Nestle India (up 1.01%), Godrej Consumer Products (up 0.97%), Jyothy Laboratories (up 0.4%), Colgate Palmolive (India) (up 0.23%) and Procter & Gamble Hygiene & Health Care (up 0.14%) advanced. Bajaj Corp (down 1.81%), Marico (down 0.34%), Britannia Industries (down 0.29%) and Dabur India (down 0.07%) declined.
A domestic broker reportedly said that Q1 June 2019 will be a muted quarter for most FMCG companies and that one could expect the company to cut advertisement spends to protect margins. The FSSAI Packaging norms may cause some troubles for the FMCG sector.
Meanwhile, IHS Markit India Business Outlook survey released yesterday, 15 July 2019, stated that business sentiment in India fell in June, dampened by worries about the sustainability of the economic upturn, water shortages, public policies and regulation. However, hopes of pro-business government policies and a better financial flow continue to underpin optimism towards output and profitability growth in the year ahead.
Falling from +18% in February to +15% in June, the net balance of private sector companies foreseeing output growth in the year ahead matches the June 2016 reading and therefore is the joint-lowest since aggregate data became available in October 2009. The figure equals the average for emerging markets, but is below that seen globally, the survey added.
Overseas, European stocks opened higher while most Asian stocks were mixed as investors looked to earnings and clues from policy makers for the next catalyst.
US stocks settled at record high Monday as investors digested second-quarter results from Citigroup and awaited a wave of second-quarter earnings.
On the economic data front, the New York Fed's Empire State manufacturing survey rebounded to 4.3 in July, from minus 8.6 in June.
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