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Sensex, Nifty march ahead in broader rally; Europe opens in green

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The market further extended rally and hit fresh intraday high in afternoon trade. Recovery in global stock markets triggered bargain hunting in domestic shares. The Nifty scaled above the 8800 mark.

At 13:30 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was up 1849.39 points 6.54% at 30,137.62. The Nifty 50 index was surged 539.90 points or 6.53% at 8,803.35.

The broader market advanced. The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index was up 5.25% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index was up 4.43%.

The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was positive. On the BSE, 1498 shares rose and 780 shares fell. A total of 137 shares were unchanged. In Nifty 50 index, 49 stocks advanced while 1 stocks declined.


Fitch Ratings on Friday cut India's growth forecast to 5.1% for FY 2020-21, saying the coronavirus outbreak is likely to hit business investment and exports. Fitch had in December 2019 projected India's growth at 5.6% for 2020-21 and 6.5% in the following year.

Fitch said the number of people affected by coronavirus will keep rising in the coming weeks but that the outbreak will remain contained. However, there are downside risks to this scenario.

COVID-19 Crisis:

Coronavirus has infected more than 245,000 people and killed more than 10,000 across the world. More than 88,000 people have recovered.

India has reported 5 deaths and over 195 cases so far.

In his address to the nation, PM Narendra Modi called for Janata Curfew on 22 March 2020 and urged people to avoid panic buying.

Stocks in Spotlight:

ONGC (up 15.56%), GAIL (India) (up 13.98%), Wipro (up 13%), TCS (up 12.65%) and Dr. Reddy's Laboratories (up 10.43%) were the top gainers.

HDFC Bank (down 1.51%) and IndusInd Bank (down 1.41%) were the top losers.

Hero MotoCorp rose 1.21% to Rs 1727. The company said it commenced commercial production at its new greenfield manufacturing facility, situated at Chittoor in Andhra Pradesh. This facility is the company's eighth manufacturing plant and sixth in India.

Meanwhile, the Hero MotoCorp has filed an interlocutory application before the Supreme Court of India seeking relaxation of the deadline set for sale or registration of BS-IV vehicles i.e. 31 March 2020.

Hero MotoCorp said that in view of the completely unforeseen developments that have arisen out of the prevailing force majeure situation on account of COVID-19, the company has prayed for an extension of time for a period of three months, as this has hampered all aspects of industry. The Ministry of Finance has also declared that the COVID-19 should be considered as a case of natural calamity and force majeure be invoked.

State Bank of India advanced 4.46% to Rs 212.95. SBI informed that a meeting of the central board of the bank will be held on 27 March 2020 to consider the extension of approval accorded by central board for raising equity capital from market up to Rs 20,000 crore from the market till 31 March, 2021 subject to the approval of shareholders, RBI and Gol. The board of the bank also approved divestment of entire equity stake (19.99%) held in A Little World.

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries jumped 4.15% to Rs 375.15. The drug maker informed that the company has approved the buy-back of its equity shares of face value of Re 1 each from the open market at a maximum price of Rs 425 per equity share for an aggregate maximum amount of up to Rs 1,700 crore.

Global Markets:

European stocks opened in the green while most Asian markets were trading higher on Thursday following the overnight rebound in the US market, as massive relief packages announced by global central banks and governments to ease the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic boosted investor sentiment.

China's loan prime rates (LPR) on Friday were kept unchanged from their February levels, with both the 1-year and 5-year LPR left steady at 4.05% and 4.75%, respectively.

Developments on the ongoing global coronavirus outbreak continued to be watched. Europe has now become the epicenter of the global coronavirus pandemic, with Italy's death toll surpassing that of China, where the virus originated, and cases rising exponentially across the continent.

Central banks from across the globe, ranging from Australia's Reserve Bank of Australia to the U. S. Federal Reserve, have cut interest rates and announced plans to buy bonds in recent days as authorities worldwide race to combat the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

In US, stocks closed modestly higher on Thursday, in another volatile session, as central banks and governments pledged support for the economic shocks from the coronavirus pandemic

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

First Published: Fri, March 20 2020. 13:32 IST