Sensex slumps over 500 points; Nifty below 8,150

Benchmark indices continue to reel under selling pressure weighed down by sectors like financials, metal, capital goods and oil & gas.

Investors have turned cautious ahead of key macro-economic data like Consumer Price Index (CPI) and Index of Industrial Production (IIP) which will be unveiled today.

At 12:20 PM, the 30-share Sensex is down 564 points at 26,943 levels and the 50-share Nifty has lost 183 points to quote at 8,143.

Among broader markets, BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices are down over 1%. The market breadth is weak, with 1,458 declines and 536 advances.

Meanwhile, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares worth a net Rs 169.97 crore yesterday, as per provisional data as per provisional data released by the stock exchanges.

On the currency front, the rupee depreciated 30 paise to 64.15 against the dollar in early trade today on the Interbank Foreign Exchange as the American currency firmed up overseas.

ASIAN MARKETS

Asian stocks were mostly lower and the euro sagged on Tuesday as insufficient progress on talks between debt-strapped Greece and its creditors kept investors on edge.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.3%. Decliners included shares in South Korea, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Thailand, while Chinese equities bucked the trend and rose modestly.

In a closely-watched Eurogroup meeting on Monday, euro zone finance ministers welcomed progress in negotiations between Greece and its creditors but said more work is needed to close a cash-for-reform deal.

SECTORS & STOCKS

Counters like Banks, Capital Goods, Metal and Oil & Gas have plunged over 2%. Infact, all they sectoral indices are trading in negative zone.

Banking stocks have dropped ahead of the release of data on inflation based on the consumer price index (CPI) for April 2015. ICICI Bank, Axis Bank, SBI, HDFC and HDFC Bank have plummeted between 2-3%.

Indian economic data on Tuesday is expected to be mixed, highlighting the need for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to accelerate reforms to bolster growth as he prepares to start his second year in office.

Consumer price inflation probably eased to a four-month low of 4.9% in April from 5.2% a month ago, according to a Reuters poll of economists.

Metal shares have slipped in trades today on account of profit booking. Rate –cut by China lifted metal stocks yesterday. Vedanta, Tata Steel and Hindalco have slipped between 3-4%.

Capital Goods majors L&T, BHEL have dropped between 2-3% ahead of the IIP numbers due later during the day.

Oil and Gas exploration companies such as RIL and ONGC are trading 2-3% lower on the back of decline in the crude oil prices.

On the gaining side, Hero Moto have surged over 3%. Dr Reddy’s Lab has surged over 2% ahead of the quarterly results due later during the day.

SMART MOVERS

Shares of the private sector lender Dhanlaxmi Bank have surged 14% to Rs 43.40 on the NSE in early morning trade, on the back of heavy volumes, amid reports that Kotak Mahindra Bank is looking to acquire the Kerala-based lender.

Jubilant Industries is locked at the upper circuit of 10% at Rs 168, also its 52-week high on the NSE, after the company said its arm Jubilant Agri and Consumer Products agreed to transfer its retail hypermarket business to Aditya Birla Retail via slump sale basis.

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