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Sensex down 192 pts; Nifty holds 17,400 level

Published on Mar 31, 2022 14:45

The benchmark indices declined further in mid-afternoon trade, as pharma and healthcare scrips dragged. The Nifty hovered above 17,400 mark. Trading was volatile as March 2022 F&O contracts expire today, 31 March 2022.

At 14:30 IST, the barometer index, S&P BSE Sensex fell 191.78 points or 0.33% at 58,492.21. The Nifty 50 index lost 62 points or 0.35% at 17,436.25.

The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index rose 0.03%. The S&P BSE Small-Cap index gained 0.35%.

The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was negative. On the BSE, shares 1,538 rose and 1,813 shares fell. A total of 119 shares were unchanged.


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. In Scenario 1, the crude oil price is assumed to be elevated for three months, and in Scenario 2, the assumption is for six months, both with a half cost pass-through into the domestic economy.

Ind-Ra expects GDP to grow 7.2% Y-o-Y in Scenario 1 and 7% Y-o-Y in Scenario 2 in FY23, compared to its earlier forecast of 7.6%. However, the size of the Indian economy in FY23 will still be 10.6% and 10.8% lower than the FY23 GDP trend value in Scenario 1 and Scenario 2, respectively, the firm added.

Numbers to Watch:

The yield on 10-year benchmark federal paper rose to 6.818% as compared with 6.784% at close in the previous trading session.

In the foreign exchange market, the rupee was higher against the dollar. The partially convertible rupee was hovering at 75.72, compared with its close of 75.90 during the previous trading session.

MCX Gold futures for 5 April 2022 settlement rose 0.37% to Rs 51,140.

The US Dollar index (DXY), which tracks the greenback`s value against a basket of currencies, rose 0.34% to 98.12.

In the commodities market, Brent crude for May 2022 settlement fell $4.09 at $109.36 a barrel.

Buzzing Index:

The Nifty Pharma index fell 1.19% to 13,582. The index lost 1.37% in two trading sessions.

Ipca Laboratories (down 4.64%), Divi`s Laboratories (down 2.32%), Alkem Laboratories (down 2.26%), Strides Pharma Science (down 2.12%) and Zydus Lifesciences (down 1.91%) were the top losers in the Pharma segment.

Stocks in Spotlight:

Grasim Industries fell 0.31%. The company said its unit, Birla Cellulose, has signed a letter of intent with Renewcell, the Swedish textile-to-textile recycling innovator, concerning a long-term commercial collaboration for man-made cellulosic fiber production. The agreement affirms the two companies` intent to work together to supply high quality Liva Reviva textile fibers made using Circulose, Renewcell`s 100% recycled textile raw material, to global fashion brands and textile industry in the coming years. The shared ambition is to use 30,000 tonnes of Circulose per year. The agreement has been facilitated by Ekman Group, Renewcell`s exclusive global trading partner.

Ashoka Buildcon gained 0.12%. Ashoka Buildcon on Thursday announced that it has received a Letter of Award (LOA) from National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) worth Rs 1,079 crore. The scope of the project involves the development of 6 lane access controlled greenfield highway from Baswantpur (Maharashtra) to Singondi (Madhya Pradesh) of NH 150 C on Hybrid Annuity Mode (HAM) under Bharatmala Pariyojana project. The accepted bid project cost for the project is Rs 1,079 crore with the construction period spanning for 912 days from the date of appointment. The operational period will be 15 years from the commercial operation date.

Global Markets:

Shares in Europe and Asia declined on the last trading day of March, a month marked by global geopolitical and economic uncertainty after Russia`s invasion of Ukraine.

The UK economy expanded more than initially estimated in the fourth quarter, reflecting the revisions across the service sector, data from the Office for National Statistics showed on Thursday. Gross domestic product grew 1.3% sequentially in the fourth quarter, instead of the initial estimate of 1%. This was also faster than the 0.9% rise in the third quarter.

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.

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.

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