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Monday, February 01, 2016

Post Session: Markets end in red ahead of RBI policy; financial stocks weigh

The Indian equities ended tad lower on Monday, led by profit booking in frontline bluechip stocks coupled with selling across financial space, tracking a subdued cues from Asian peers. The traders refrained from enlarging any fresh positions before the RBI’s policy meet on Tuesday despite surprise expansion in India’s January manufacturing PMI. India’s official manufacturing purchasing manager’s index (PMI) expanded to a four-month high of 51.1 against 49.1 in December, signalling a pickup in Asia's third biggest economy.

The 30-share BSE SENSEX closed at 24824.83, down by 45.86 points or by 0.18 per cent, and the NSE Nifty ended at 7555.95, down by 7.6 points or by 0.1 per cent.

In the volatile trade today, the BSE Sensex touched intraday high of 25002.32 and intraday low of 24788.58, while the NSE Nifty touched intraday high of 7600.45 and intraday low of 7541.25.

Bucking the trend, the broader market ended higher, with the BSE MIDCAP closing at 10476.82, up by 59.56 points or by 0.57 per cent, while the BSE SMLCAP settled at 10901.41, up by 31.57 points or by 0.29 per cent. The apex bank is likely to keep interest rates unchanged amidst the recent acceleration in inflation and as the central bank eyes the progress & direction of key macroeconomic parameters including the fiscal deficit in the upcoming Union Budget. The apex bank had cut borrowing costs by a total 125 bps in 2015.

On the sectoral front, bankex and power indices emerged as top losers, falling 1.4 and 0.55 per cent, respectively.

The top losers of the BSE Sensex pack were ICICI Bank Ltd. (Rs. 217.15,-5.63%), State Bank of India (Rs. 172.90,-3.92%), Maruti Suzuki India Ltd. (Rs. 3946.80,-3.68%), Axis Bank Ltd. (Rs. 399.30,-2.17%), Hindustan Unilever Ltd. (Rs. 800.90,-1.96%), among others.

Meanwhile, Adani Ports & Special Economic Zone Ltd. (Rs. 220.50,+3.67%), Coal India Ltd. (Rs. 328.60,+2.67%), Bharti Airtel Ltd. (Rs. 296.50,+2.35%), Asian Paints Ltd. (Rs. 887.25,+2.12%), Cipla Ltd. (Rs. 597.80,+2.07%), were among top gainers on BSE.

The Market breadth, indicating the overall strength of the market, was strong. On BSE out of total shares traded 2984, shares advanced were 1527 while 1302 shares declined and 155 were unchanged..

On the global front, the Asian equities ended mixed with markets in China and Hong Kong succumbing to losses after underwhelming Chinese factory data which showed continued manufacturing contraction in the world’s second biggest economy, souring sentiment. Japan’s Nikkei 225 soared nearly 2 per cent amidst last week’s surprise central bank stimulus move.