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Nifty's gains outweigh gains in Sensex

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Cement, construction and capital goods led rally on the bourses after the government provided a thrust on the infrastructure sector and sharply increased the government's capital expenditure for 2015-16 in Union Budget 2015-16 tabled by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in parliament on Saturday, 28 February 2015. A rally in cement stocks meant that the gain in the 50-unit CNX Nifty in percentage terms was higher than the gains in the barometer index -- the S&P BSE Sensex. There is not a single cement stock which has representation in the Sensex whereas all the three major cement makers -- UltraTech Cement, ACC and Ambuja Cements -- are a part of the Nifty. Shares of these three cement companies rose 5.3% to 7.7%.

The market breadth indicating the overall health of the market was positive. The Sensex was provisionally up 105.99 or 0.36% to 29467.49. The CNX was provisionally up 54.90 points or 0.62% at 8,956.75. The BSE Mid-Cap index was up 1.31%, outperforming the Sensex.

Meanwhile, the outcome of a survey showed that Indian manufacturing activity expanded at its slowest pace in five months in February.

Index heavyweight L&T hit record high on strong infrastructure push in the Union Budget 2015-16. ITC extended steep losses registered during the previous trading session triggered by the government raising excise duty on cigarettes in the Union Budget 2015-16. Shares of public sector oil marketing companies (PSU OMCs) edged higher after the companies announced increase in petrol and diesel prices with effect from midnight of 28 February 2015/1 March 2015. Aviation stocks edged lower after jet fuel price was hiked by a steep 8.2% on 1 March 2015. Bajaj Auto tumbled after weak sales in February 2015.

Meanwhile, global credit rating agency Standard and Poor's reportedly said today, 2 March 2015, that a relatively heavy general government debt burden and large budgetary subsidies could constrain its sovereign credit ratings on India. The rating agency said that India's budget for 2015/16 highlighted the government's commitment to keeping the fiscal deficit low.

Meanwhile, the Government of India and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) have signed an agreement on monetary policy framework whereby the two sides have officially decided inflation targeting by the RBI.

Key indices underwent intraday volatility today, 2 March 2015. After seeing initial volatility, the Sensex and Nifty, both, hit their highest level in more than four weeks in morning trade. The Sensex reversed direction later. The barometer index alternately swung between positive and negative zone till mid-afternoon trade. The index once again firmed up in late trade.

Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares worth a net Rs 614.03 crore during the previous trading session on Saturday, 28 February 2015, as per provisional data released by the stock exchanges. Domestic institutional investors (DIIs) sold shares worth a net Rs 740.74 crore on Saturday, 28 February 2015, as per provisional data. A special live trading session was held on that day due to presentation of the Budget.

In the foreign exchange market, the rupee edged lower against the dollar.

Brent crude oil futures edged lower after previous trading session's sharp rally.

In overseas markets, European stock edged higher. Asian stocks edged higher, buoyed by an interest rate cut in China.

As per provisional closing, the S&P BSE Sensex was up 105.99 or 0.36% to 29467.49. The index jumped 214.82 points at the day's high of 29,576.32 in morning trade, its highest level since 30 January 2015. The index fell 101.73 points at the day's low of 29,259.77 in afternoon trade.

The CNX Nifty was up 54.90 points or 0.62% at 8,956.75, as per provisional closing. The index hit a high of 8,972.35 in intraday trade, its highest level since 30 January 2015. The index hit a low of 8,885.45 in intraday trade.

The BSE Mid-Cap index was up 142.08 points or 1.31% at 10,952.93. The BSE Small-Cap index was up 104.36 points or 0.93% at 11,370.80. Both these indices outperformed the Sensex.

The market breadth indicating the overall health of the market was positive. On BSE, 1,531 shares advanced while 1,333 shares declined. A total of 114 shares were unchanged.

The total turnover on BSE amounted to Rs 4629 crore, higher than Rs 4230.96 crore during the previous trading session.

Cement stocks gained in anticipation that huge spending on infrastructure sector unveiled by the government in the Budget would boost demand for cement.

ACC surged 5.44% at Rs 1,774.80 which is a record high for the stock. The stock hit a low of Rs 1,680 in intraday trade.

Ambuja Cements gained 5.3% at Rs 286. The stock hit record high of Rs 286.60 in intraday trade. The stock hit a low of Rs 271.95 in intraday trade.

UltraTech Cement jumped 7.7% at Rs 3,379. The stock hit a record high of Rs 3,385 in intraday trade. The stock hit a low of Rs 3,152 in intraday trade.

Shree Cement gained 5.57% at Rs 11,425. Shree Cements during market hours today, 2 March 2015, said that it has commissioned cement mill section of 2.60 million tons per annum (MTPA) capacity at Baloda Bazar near Raipur in Chhattisgarh on 24 February 2015.

Grasim Industries was up 6.09% at Rs 3,988. Grasim has exposure to the cement sector through its subsidiary UltraTech Cement.

According to reports, cement prices could go up by Rs 15-20 a bag due to hike in excise duty. The government had announced hike in excise duty on cement by Rs 100 per tonne to Rs 1,000 per tonne in Union Budget 2015-16 on 28 February 2015.

Coal India rose 0.33% at Rs 395.15. The stock hit a high of Rs 398 and a low of Rs 386.10. Coal India during market hours today, 2 March 2015 reported production and offtake performance figures for February 2015. Coal India said that the company and its subsidiary companies' production on provisional basis was 103% of targeted production at 47.98 million tonne in February 2015. Coal India and its subsidiary companies' offtake on provisional basis was 100% of targeted offtake at 43.17 million tonne in February 2015.

Index heavyweight L&T hit record high on strong infrastructure push in the Union Budget 2015-16. The stock was up 4.48% at Rs 1,846.05. The stock hit a record high of Rs 1,848 in intraday trade. The stock hit a low of Rs 1,780.25 in intraday trade.

The Union Budget 2015-16 announced on Saturday, 28 February 2015, proposed setting up 5 new ultra mega power projects of 4,000 megawatts (MW) each in the plug-and-play mode. All clearances and linkages will be in place before the project is awarded by a transparent auction system. Similar plug-and-play projects in other infrastructure projects such as roads, ports, rail lines, airports etc will also be considered, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in his first full-fledged Union Budget 2015-16 announced on Saturday, 28 February 2015.

Meanwhile, L&T during trading hours today, 2 March 2015 said that the power transmission and distribution (PT&D) business of L&T Construction has executed and commissioned two benchmark projects in the country.

Shares of PSU OMCs advanced after the companies announced increase in petrol and diesel prices with effect from midnight of 28 February 2015/1 March 2015. BPCL (up 4.2%), HPCL (up 6.01%), and Indian Oil Corporation (up 5.48%) edged higher.

Indian Oil Corporation (IOCL) after trading hours on Saturday, 28 February 2015, announced increase in retail selling price of petrol by Rs 3.18 a litre at Delhi (including state levies), with corresponding increase in other states. The diesel price was raised by Rs 3.09 a litre. IOCL said there has been steep increase in international prices of both petrol and diesel after the last price revision on 16 February 2015. The rupee depreciated slightly during this period. The combined impact of both these factors warrants increase in retail selling prices of both petrol and diesel, IOCL said in a statement. The movement of prices in international oil market and the rupee-dollar exchange rate shall continue to be closely monitored and developing trends of the market will be reflected in future price changes, IOCL said.

Aviation stocks edged lower after jet fuel price was hiked by a steep 8.2% on 1 March 2015. SpiceJet (down 3.04%) and Jet Airways (India) (down 3.29%) edged lower.

The price of aviation turbine fuel (ATF), or jet fuel, in Delhi was hiked by Rs 3,849.97 per kilolitre, or 8.2%, to Rs 50,363 per kilo litre with effect from midnight of 28 February 2015/1 March 2015.

Maruti Suzuki India rose 2.95% at Rs 3,725. Maruti Suzuki India during market hours today, 2 March 2015, said that its total sales rose 8.7% to 1.18 lakh units in February 2015 over February 2014. Domestic sales rose 8.2% to 1.07 lakh units in February 2015 over February 2014. Exports rose 14% to 10,659 units in February 2015 over February 2014.

Bajaj Auto fell 4.02% at Rs 2,075 after total sales fell 22% to 2.43 lakh units in February 2015 over February 2014. The announcement was made during trading hours today, 2 March 2015. Motorcycles sales fell 21% to 2.16 lakh units in February 2015 over February 2014. Sales of commercial vehicles fell 32% to 27,242 units in February 2015 over February 2014. Exports fell 20% to 1.12 lakh units in February 2015 over February 2014.

Eicher Motors fell 0.41% at Rs 16,160. The stock hit a high of Rs 16,699 and a low of Rs 16,160. Eicher Motors before market hours today, 2 March 2015, said that the total sales of its subsidiary VE Commercial Vehicles rose 9.2% to 3,100 units in February 2015 over February 2014. Domestic sales rose 9.6% to 2,774 units in February 2015 over February 2014. Exports rose 5.5% to 326 units in February 2015 over February 2014.

Separately, Eicher Motors before market hours today, 2 March 2015 said that its total sales jumped 49% to 30,240 units in February 2015 over February 2014. Exports rose 49% to 749 units in February 2015 over February 2014.

Ashok Leyland rose 4.52% at Rs 72.90. Ashok Leyland during market hours today, 2 March 2015 said that its total sales rose 36% to 10,762 units in February 2015 over February 2014. Sales of medium & heavy commercial vehicles (M&HCV) rose 48% to 8,230 units in February 2015 over February 2014. Light commercial vehicles (LCV) sales rose 8% to 2,532 units in February 2015 over February 2014.

Reliance Industries (RIL) fell 0.32% at Rs 863.50. The stock hit a high of Rs 875.60 and a low of Rs 856.15. RIL during market hours today, 2 March 2015, said that early morning today, 2 March 2015, a fire was noticed in a section of its associate company Reliance Gas Transportation Infrastructure (RGTIL)'s pipeline in Maddikunta near Sadasivapet (earlier reported near Zaheerabad) in remote Telangana. The company's experts immediately reached the war room as well as the site of fire, RIL said. There was no injury or loss of life, RIL added. The fire has been controlled by safely evacuating and coordoning off that section of pipeline. After an internal investigation, normal gas flow to the downstream customers will be resumed, RIL said. Reduction or interruption of gas flow to the downstream customers is expected to last for a period of about 24 to 48 hours, RIL said. All concerned authorities and affected customers have been informed, it added.

Cairn India fell 0.41% at Rs 253.70. The stock hit a high of Rs 258 and a low of Rs 253.35. In a clarification with regard to news item titled "3 senior Cairn execs under leakgate probe", Cairn India during market hours today, 2 March 2015, said that Cairn India is a law abiding corporate and follows highest standards of corporate governance. The matter is under investigation and it would be inappropriate to make any comments at this stage, Cairn India said. The company however, has and will continue to extend all necessary cooperation to the authorities, Cairn India said.

ITC extended steep losses registered during the previous trading session triggered by the government raising excise duty on cigarettes in the Union Budget 2015-16. The stock was off 4.91% at Rs 343.50. Shares of ITC had tumbled 8.26% to settle at Rs 361.25 on Saturday, 28 February 2015. Finance Minister Arun Jaitely in the Union Budget 2015-16 on Saturday, 28 February 2015, announced that excise duty on cigarettes is being increased by 25% for cigarette of length not exceeding 65 mm and by 15% for cigarette of other lengths. Similar increases are proposed on cigars, cheroots and cigarillos.

TCS fell 0.19% at Rs 2,670.35. The stock hit a high of Rs 2,707 and a low of Rs 2,653.25. TCS during market hours today, 2 March 2015 announced the launch of business process innovation and simulation & visualization as a service (VaaS) in a strategic partnership with iRise, the global leader in enterprise visualization and simulation software. TCS' new offerings will enable customers to realize business solutions faster by accelerating time to value, TCS said in a statement.

Infosys fell 0.57% at Rs 2,281.85. The stock hit a high of Rs 2,308 and a low of Rs 2,278.40. Infosys during market hours today, 2 March 2015, said that it has signed a five-year agreement with the leading global express delivery company TNT, to help TNT simplify and transform its technology applications.

In the foreign exchange market, the rupee edged lower against the dollar. The partially convertible rupee was hovering at 61.975, compared with its close of 61.83 during the previous trading session on Friday, 27 February 2015.

Brent crude oil futures edged lower after previous trading session's sharp rally. Brent for April settlement was off 35 cents at $62.23 a barrel. The contract had jumped $2.53 a barrel or 4.21% to settle at $62.58 a barrel during the previous trading session on Friday, 27 February 2015.

The Government of India and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) have signed an agreement on monetary policy framework whereby the two sides have officially decided inflation targeting by the RBI. A document dated 20 February 2015 published on the finance ministry's website today, 2 March 2015, showed that the two sides have set consumer price inflation target of 4% with a band of plus or minus 2 percentage points for the financial year 2016-17 and all subsequent years. The RBI will first aim to have consumer inflation fall below 6% by January 2016. The RBI governor will determine the main lending rate viz. the repo rate and any other measures needed to achieve the inflation target. The central bank will be deemed to have missed its target if consumer inflation is at more than 6% for three consecutive quarters, starting from the financial year 2015-16. The central bank will also be deemed to have missed its target if consumer inflation is less than 2% for three consecutive quarters, starting from the financial year 2016-17. If the central bank fails to meet the inflation target, it will have to submit a report to the Government of India stating therein the reasons for the RBI's failure to achieve the inflation target, the remedial actions proposed to be taken by the RBI and an estimate of the time-period within which the inflation target will be achieved pursuant to the timely implementation of the proposed remedial measures.

Meanwhile, the outcome of a survey showed that Indian manufacturing activity expanded at its slowest pace in five months in February, with output and new orders expanding at softer rates than those seen in the past four months. The HSBC Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index, compiled by Markit, fell for the second consecutive month, to 51.2 in February from 52.9 in January. A reading above 50 separates growth from contraction. The moderation in the growth rate was evident across the three monitored market groups. Subsequently, employment decreased, reversing the marginal rise seen in January. Output charge inflation was historically muted as some manufacturers offered discounts due to a competitive environment. Furthermore, costs fell for the first time in almost six years. On a positive note, foreign orders rose at a strong and accelerated pace, while the PMI remained in positive territory. These factors brighten the prospects for a rebound in output and employment in coming months, said Pollyanna De Lima, Economist at Markit.

Meanwhile, global credit rating agency Standard and Poor's reportedly said today, 2 March 2015, that a relatively heavy general government debt burden and large budgetary subsidies could constrain its sovereign credit ratings on India. The rating agency said that India's budget for 2015/16 highlighted the government's commitment to keeping the fiscal deficit low.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley provided a thrust on the infrastructure sector, sharply increased the government's capital expenditure for 2015-16 and announced a road map for cut in corporate tax rate by five per cent over four years when he presented Union Budget 2015-16 in parliament on Saturday, 28 February 2015.

European stock markets were higher today, 2 March 2015. Key indices in Germany and UK were up 0.28% to 0.37%. In France, the CAC 40 index was off 0.17%.

Meanwhile, German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble reportedly softened his hard-line attitude towards Greece, saying its new Left-wing Syriza government needs a bit of time but appears to be able to work towards resolving its debt crisis.

Asian stock markets edged higher today, 2 March 2015, buoyed by an interest rate cut in China. Key indices in China, Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Indonesia were up 0.15% to 0.78%. Key indices in Taiwan and Singapore were off 0.06% to 0.22%.

China's central bank cut benchmark interest rates for the second time in three months as disinflation gives room to step up support for the nation's slowing economy. The People's Bank of China on Saturday, 28 February 2015, cut the benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points (bps) to 5.35% and reduced the benchmark saving rate by a similar margin to 2.5%.

HSBC's final reading of China's manufacturing sector in Febuary came in at 50.7, much higher than the flash reading of 50.1 and the official February reading announced over the weekend, latest data today, 2 March 2015 showed.

Trading in US index futures indicated that the Dow could gain 31 points at the opening bell today, 2 March 2015.

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First Published: Mon, March 02 2015. 15:34 IST
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