Sensex, Nifty end near flat line; SBI Life & HDFC Bank biggest drags

NEW DELHI: Selling in HDFC Bank dragged benchmark indices to flatline on Thursday while Maruti Suzuki, SBI and some consumer discretionary names provided some support amid positive global cues.

Approval of Covid vaccine in the UK has given hopes of early eradication of the virus. This assurance also diffused nervousness in the market as India VIX came down by about 5 per cent.

The 30-share pack Sensex ended up 14.61 points or 0.03 per cent to 44,632.65. Its broader peer NSE Nifty climbed 20.15 points or 0.15 per cent to 13,133.90.

Market at a glance:

  • SBI Cards jumped over 5% after RBI bars rival HDFC Bank from issuing fresh cards
  • Maruti Suzuki surges 7% after positive management commentary
  • SBI climbs 4% after CLSA raises target to Rs 360
  • HDFC Bank falls over 2% on RBI’s adverse orders
  • Burger King IPO subscribed 7 times so far led by retail applications
  • Delta Corp up 14% after SC says taxes on gambling legal

“The broad market is continuing its buoyancy, led by rally in mid & small cap stocks. This trend can continue given the gap between the pricing of main and broad stocks. Today, large caps are mildly underperforming, in which financial stocks did contribute to the upside, but weakness in HDFC bank post the RBI curbs limited the upside. Hopes are alive that economic recovery will grow wider as fresh Covid cases are reducing, adding strength to the momentum,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

“Traders should restrict leveraged positions and wait for clarity”

— Ajit Mishra, Religare Broking

Among the blue chip names, Maruti Suzuki was the biggest gainer, up 7.33 per cent to Rs 7,735. NTPC, ONGC, Hindalco, SBI, Bajaj Finserv, Asian Paints and UPL were other major gainers rising more than 3 per cent.

SBI Life Insurance was the biggest drag on Nifty followed by HDFC Bank that slipped 2 per cent and 1.84 per cent, respectively. TCS, Infosys, Bajaj Auto, M&M, HDFC and Bharti Airtel were other losers.

Broader market indices also saw buying and outperformed their headline peers. Nifty Smallcap rose 0.61 per cent and Nifty Midcap added 0.68 per cent. Nifty 500, the broadest index on NSE, rose 0.47 per cent.

Trident, SpiceJet, Indian Bank, Oberoi Realty, Tata Chemicals and Union Bank of India were the biggest gainers from mid and smallcap indices, climbing in the range of 5-10 per cent.

Varun Beverages, Fortis Healthcare, Adani Gas, Vakrangee, Wockhardt Pharma and Aegis Chemicals were major losers from broader market space, declining in a wide range 2-10 per cent.

Sectorally, Nifty PSU Bank was on a roll, rising 4.81 per cent. Nifty Metal and Nifty Media added in the range of 2-3 per cent. Nifty Auto rose more than a per cent. On the other hand, Nifty IT and Nifty Private Bank were top losing sectors.

European shares were trading with losses. FTSE was down 0.23 per cent, while France CAC and Germany DAX dipped 0.42 per cent and 0.53 per cent, respectively. Barring China and Taiwan, all Asian markets closed with gains, Thailand’s Set Composite added the most 1.44 per cent.

Let’s prepare for tomorrow:

  • RBI policy meet: Market will keenly watch the decisions taken by RBI policymakers, though it is largely expected that the apex bank will keep rates unchanged.
  • Loan growth: RBI will also release loan growth, deposit growth and forex reserves data in the evening.

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