The Sensex and the Nifty came off day's high in mid-afternoon trade. At 14:18 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was up 81.35 points or 0.22% at 36,664.09. The Nifty 50 index was up 23.10 points or 0.21% at 10,935.35.
After trading almost flat in early trade, indices inched up in morning trade. Indices traded in a narrow range near flat line in mid-morning trade. Key benchmarks firmed up and hit fresh intraday high in early afternoon trade. Stocks held positive zone in afternoon trade.
Broader market witnessed selling. Among secondary barometers, the BSE Mid-Cap index was down 0.59%. The BSE Small-Cap index was down 0.92%.
The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was weak. On BSE, 777 shares rose and 1645 shares fell. A total of 144 shares were unchanged.
Cement shares fell across the board. Ambuja Cements (down 2.31%) and UltraTech Cement (down 0.97%), edged lower.
Grasim Industries was down 1.21%. Grasim has exposure to cement sector through its holding in UltraTech Cement.
ACC was down 2.43%. On a consolidated basis, ACC's net profit rose 256.05% to Rs 732.35 crore on 10.87% rise in net sales to Rs 3,788.62 crore in Q4 December 2018 over Q4 December 2017. The result was announced during trading hours today, 5 February 2019.
Realty shares declined. Housing Development and Infrastructure (HDIL) (down 9.13%), Indiabulls Real Estate (down 6.44%), DLF (down 5.11%), D B Realty (down 4.86%), Unitech (down 4.83%), Parsvnath Developers (down 4.48%), Peninsula Land (down 3.2%), Phoenix Mills (down 2.96%), Oberoi Realty (down 1.22%), Anant Raj (down 0.94%), Mahindra Lifespace Developers (down 0.69%), Godrej Properties (down 0.67%), Prestige Estates Projects (down 0.45%) and Omaxe (down 0.16%), edged lower. Sunteck Realty (up 0.50%) and Sobha (up 1.03%), edged higher.
On the economic front, business activity growth in the Indian service sector cooled further at the start of 2019, amid the weakest upturn in new work since last September. The seasonally adjusted Nikkei India Services Business Activity Index fell for the second straight month in January, from 53.2 in December to 52.2, indicating a softer expansion in output.
Meanwhile, fiscal deficit for the first nine months of the current fiscal, that is April-December, crossed 112.4% of the Budget Estimate (BE). Fiscal deficit for the first nine months is more than Rs 7.01 lakh crore as against the BE of Rs 6.24 lakh crore.
According to the data released by the Controller General of Accounts (CGA), the revenue receipts of the government totalled Rs 10.84 lakh crore or 62.8% of BE in 2018-2019 till December, compared with 66.9% during the same period last year.
Tax revenue was 63.2% of BE, compared with 73.4% in the comparable period of the previous year. The total expenditure of the government at December-end was Rs 18.32 lakh crore or 75% of BE.
Overseas, European stocks were trading higher Tuesday, as overnight strength on Wall Street underpinned appetite for riskier assets.
Most Asian markets remained closed for public holidays. US stocks closed higher Monday, as investors looked ahead to another week of high-profile earnings and developments in US-China trade talks.
US-China trade talks will remain in focus as a March 1 deadline to avoid an increase on tariffs on Chinese imports looms. On the US data front, US factory orders fell by 0.6% in November.
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