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Benchmarks trade flat; European shares advance

Published on Mar 31, 2022 13:24

The domestic equity barometers traded near the flat line, with some negative bias in afternoon trade. The Nifty was trading a tad below the 17,500 mark. FMCG shares outperformed while pharma and healthcare stocks edged lower.

At 13:22 IST, the S&P BSE Sensex was down 4.15 points or 0.01% to 58,679.84. The Nifty 50 index lost 4.15 points or 0.02% to 17,494.10.

Hindalco (down 4.52%), Divi`s Lab (down 2%), Apollo Hospitals Enterprise (down 1.91%), Cipla (down 1.39%) and Reliance Industries (down 1.28%) were the top Nifty losers.

Mahindra & Mahindra (up 1.93%), JSW Steel (up 1.71%), Britannia Industries (up 1.70%), Hero MotoCorp (up 1.31%) and Tata Consumer (up 1.12%) were the top Nifty gainers.

The broader market outperformed the main indices. The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index added 0.29% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index rallied 0.58%.

The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was almost even. On the BSE, 1,688 shares rose and 1,629 shares fell. A total of 121 shares were unchanged.

Trading was volatile as March 2022 F&O contracts expire today, 31 March 2022.


India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) stated that its FY23 Economic Outlook released in the month of January 2022, is unlikely to hold in view of the global geo-political situation arising out of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. Since the duration of Russia-Ukraine conflict continues to be uncertain, Ind-Ra has created two scenarios with respect to the FY23 economic outlook basis certain assumptions.

Stocks in Spotlight:

Gail (India) rose 1.14% to Rs 155.15. The company proposes to buy back up to 5,69,85,463 equity shares, comprising 1.28% of the total paid-up equity capital of the company, at a price of Rs 190 per share, for an aggregate amount not exceeding Rs 1082,72,37,970.

Sandur Manganese & Iron Ores advanced 3.32% to Rs 3569.95. The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India, has granted environmental clearance to the company`s proposed change in plant configuration and product mix for the metal & ferro alloy plant situated in Karnataka

Ashoka Buildcon added 0.64% to Rs 86.45. The company announced that it has received a letter of award (LOA) from National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for a road project worth Rs 1,079 crore. The scope of the project involves the development of 6 lane access controlled greenfield highway from Baswantpur to Singondi of NH 150 C on Hybrid Annuity Mode (HAM) under Bharatmala Pariyojana project.

Global Markets:

European stocks edged higher on the last trading day of March, a month marked by global geopolitical and economic uncertainty after Russia`s invasion of Ukraine.

Geopolitical uncertainty and concerns over rising inflation have dominated market sentiment in March.

Meanwhile, most Asian stocks declined on Thursday as oil prices fell sharply.

China`s factory activity likely shrank in March, as the country imposed more mass testing and activity controls amid its worst resurgence of COVID-19 cases since early 2020. The country`s official manufacturing Purchasing Managers` Index for March came in at 49.5, lower than February`s reading of 50.2.

United Kingdom`s gross domestic product (GDP) rose 1.3% during the Jan-Mar`22 quarter, as declared by the country`s Office for National Statistics (ONS) on Thursday.This was slightly higher than the expectations but 0.1% below the GDP growth achieved during the same period of FY20, before the pandemic.

The ONS also revealed that the output for the quarter advanced by 1.3%, while the services sector improved by 1.5%. Oil futures dived more than $5 a barrel on Thursday after reports indicated that the Biden administration is weighing releasing some 1 million barrels of oil per day from strategic reserves for several months in a bid to calm soaring crude prices.

U.S. stocks fell on Wednesday on waning signs of progress for peace talks between Ukraine and Russia against a backdrop of a hawkish Federal Reserve curbing economic growth.

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