Key barometer indices were trading with strong gains in early afternoon trade. Trading was volatile as uncertainty regarding implications of the coronavirus outbreak worried investors. The Nifty regained 7800 mark.
At 12:30 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was up 716.53 points or 2.76% at 26,697.77. The Nifty 50 index rose 198.4 points or 2.61% at 7,808.65.
The broader market traded mixed. The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index was up 2.08% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index was down 0.05%.
Sellers outpaced buyers. On the BSE, 787 shares rose and 1201 shares fell. A total of 150 shares were unchanged. In Nifty 50 index, the breadth was positive with 36 stocks advancing and 14 stocks declining.
In an effort to stop the spread of Covid-19, complete lockdowns were announced in India's 30 states/Union Territories and a total of 548 districts.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has put the state under curfew to ensure compliance with lockdown restrictions amid the COVID-19 crisis. Essential services such as grocery, milk, medical shops, etc. will remain open. All places of worship will be closed. All forms of public transport will not be operational. Furthermore, all the district borders within the state will be sealed.
Coronavirus has infected more than 381,739 people and killed more than 16,558 across the world.
More than 102,429 people have recovered. India has reported 10 deaths and over 508 cases so far.
The NSE's India VIX, a gauge of market's expectation of volatility over the near term, jumped 11.28% to 80.11. The Nifty March 2020 futures were trading at 7,814.10, a premium of 41.2 points compared with the spot at 7,772.90.
On the options front, the Nifty option chain for 26 March 2020 expiry showed maximum call open interest (OI) of 20.26 lakh contracts at the 12,000 strike price. Maximum put OI of 15.31 lakh contracts was seen at 7,000 strike price.
Stocks in Spotlight:
Infosys jumped 7.76% to Rs 567.55 after the company said the US Securities & Exchange Commission has concluded its investigation on the whistle blower allegations. As previously disclosed, in connection with the audit committee's investigation into certain whistle blower complaints which concluded in January 2020, Infosys cooperated with an investigation by the United States Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) regarding the same matters.
Infosys said it received a notification from the SEC that it has concluded its investigation and the company does not anticipate any further action by the SEC on this matter. Infosys added that it has also responded to all the inquires received from the Indian regulatory authorities. The IT major said it will continue to cooperate with the authorities should there be any additional requests for information.
Shares of Avenue Supermarts fell 0.93% to Rs 1810. The company said that some of its stores have remained closed for operations on certain days based on the directive by the local authorities. It added that it is currently selling only daily use essential items such as grocery and FMCG products at all its stores. The firm said it continues to receive regular supply of goods from all its suppliers and distributors.
Page Industries were up 0.3% at Rs 16771.80. The company said that its manufacturing facilities and other offices are under temporary shutdown, till further notice. The duration of shutdown of manufacturing facilities and offices will depend upon the directives of the respective local / state government with respect to containment of COVID-19. Page Industries' management has taken proactive measures to safeguard the health of employees while adopting Central and State Government Advisory on the matter.
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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)