The market traded in a narrow range with strong gains in early afternoon trade. The Nifty was currently trading above the 9,000 level. At 12:25 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was up 594.10 points or 1.98% at 30,623.08. The Nifty 50 index added 178.35 points or 2.02% at 9,001.60.
Domestic shares witnessed bargain hunting after recent steep losses. The Sensex and the Nifty lost about 6% in the past three session. Domestic shares also mirrored global peers which surged on optimism about a potential vaccine for the coronavirus. However, gains were capped amid rising coronavirus cases in India.
In the broader market, the S&P BSE Mid-Cap index rose 1.33% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index advanced 0.60%. Both these indices underperformed the benchmark Sensex.
Buyers outpaced the sellers. On the BSE, 1159 shares rose and 793 shares fell. A total of 148 shares were unchanged. In the Nifty 50 index, 43 shares advanced while 7 shares declined.
The NSE's India VIX, a gauge of market's expectation of volatility over the near term, fell 3.68% to 39.4075. The Nifty April 2020 futures were trading at 8,995, a discount of 6.6 points compared with the spot at 9,001.60.
On the options front, the Nifty option chain for 28 May 2020 expiry showed maximum call open interest (OI) of 24.61 lakh contracts at the 10,000 strike price. Maximum put OI of 23.23 lakh contracts was seen at 9,000 strike price.
The Nifty Realty index slipped 0.03% to 163.25, extending losses for fourth day. The index has lost 8.49% in four sessions.
Parsvnath Developers (down 4.93%), Housing Development and Infrastructure (HDIL) (down 4.88%), Unitech (down 3.7%), Godrej Properties (down 1.8%), Brigade Enterprises (down 1.71%), Indiabulls Real Estate (down 1.44%), Prestige Estates Projects (down 1.37%) and Anant Raj (down 0.34%) declined.
Bharti Airtel jumped 8.84% to Rs 588.70. The telecom major reported a consolidated net loss of Rs 5327 crore in Q4 March 2020 (Q4 FY20) as against net profit of Rs 107.20 crore in Q4 March 2019 (Q4 FY19). The company took a hit due to an exceptional item of Rs 7,004 crore in the quarter, which comprises mainly of a charge on account of reassessment of regulatory cost based on a recent judgment on one-time spectrum charge (OTSC) related matter.
Net sales jumped 15.1% to Rs 23,722.70 crore during the period under review. EBITDA rose 51.7% to Rs 10,326 crore in Q4 FY20 over Q4 FY19. EBITDA margin stood at 43.5% as on 31 March 2020 as compared to 33% as on 31 March 2019.
The company said its average revenue per user (ARPU) rose 25.20% to Rs 154 in Q4 FY20 from Rs 123 in Q4 FY19. Growth was broad based and all segments registered healthy underlying growth, the company said. The company total customer base increased by 4.9% to 42.3 crore customers in Q4 March 2020 from 40.3 crore customers in Q4 March 2019.
Total minutes of usage on the network during the quarter were 902 billion (Bn), representing a growth of 13.3% as compared to 796 Bn in the corresponding quarter last year. Mobile Data traffic grew 74.3% to 6,688 Bn MBs during the quarter as compared to 3,836 Bn MBs in the corresponding quarter last year.
Offering comments on the impact of COVID-19 on the company's business, Bharti Airtel said: This situation continues to evolve and we are monitoring it closely to identify key risks and taking immediate actions to minimize any potential disruption from the pandemic to our business.
Astrazeneca Pharma India slumped 7.27% to Rs 2830 after net profit declined 2.4% to Rs 9.58 crore on 2.4% increase in net sales to Rs 194.90 crore in Q4 March 2020 over Q4 March 2019. Profit before tax stood at Rs 13.35 crore in Q4 March 2020, rising 57.6% year on year from Rs 8.47 crore in Q4 March 2019. The result was announced after market hours yesterday, 18 May 2020.
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