Sensex sheds over 100 points, Nifty tests 9,300; smallcap outperforms

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Benchmark indices extended losses in afternoon deals following muted global cues as European Central Bank left key interest rates at historic lows and mass bond-buying unchanged.


Back home the investors tread lightly ahead of earnings today. 35 companies including blue chip firm like Ambuja Cement will report their March-quarter results today. Street will also be wary of the volatility in the market on the first day of May series.


Nifty, yesterday, pared gains after hitting fresh record high of 9,367.15 on Wednesday, when the S&P BSE Sensex also registered fresh lifetime high of 30,184.22.


At 12:55 pm, the S&P BSE Sensex was trading at 29,911 down 118 points, while the broader Nifty50 was ruling at 9,295 down 46  points.


The BSE Midcap rose 0.2% while the BSE Smallcap advanced 0.25%.

"The broadening wedge pattern is still potent, but volatility expectation shall keep upside prospects restrained. Initial range expected to be 9,330-9,390 favouring upsides, but any push beyond the same may find hard to sustain and may attract volatility," said Geojit Financial Services in a technical note.


Snapping its three-day rise, the rupee eased from a 21-month high to end 5 paise lower at 64.16 on Thursday against the US dollar. It breached the psychologically crucial 64-mark to touch a fresh intra-day high of 63.97 in early trade. The currency opened a tad higher at 64.12/$.


Buzzing stocks


HDFC Bank fell over 1%, becoming the top laagard on BSE Sensex even after the stock’s market capitalisation crossed the Rs 4 lakh crore mark yesterday, riding high on continued optimism after strong fourth quarter earnings. HDFC Bank is only the third firm after Reliance Industries and Tata Consultancy Services to have crossed this mark.

Asian Paints, Tata Motors, Bajaj Auto and Axis Bank gained the most on BSE Sensex while HDFC Bank, M&M, HUL and Bharti Airtel shed the most in early-morning deals.

Ambuja Cements fell 0.88% as investors await its March- quarter results.


F&O rollovers at 75%


Market-wide rollovers of April F&O Series stood at 75% compared with last three months’ average of 78% while Nifty50 futures witnessed 65% rollovers to the May series compared with a three-month average of 70%.


"Rollover in Nifty is below its averages which is not a good sign for bulls. While, the long-short ratio in index Future (from FIIs front) has also dropped from 78% to 62%. As far as Options activity is concerned, 9500 followed by 9400 are seeking bull’s attention and the major support is firmly placed at 9,000-9,100," said Sneha Seth, Equity Derivative Analyst, Angel Broking in a note.


S Chand IPO oversubscribed


The Rs 728-crore initial public offering (IPO) of education company S Chand and Company has garnered 1.85 times subscription on Thursday, a day before close. The 7.7-million share offering has so far received bids for 14.21 million shares. The institutional investor portion was been subscribed 2.7 times, retail portion has been subscribed 2.15 times and high-net worth individual quota has been subscribed 30%.


Global Markets


Asian stocks inched higher on Friday and looked set to close a strong week on a positive note, while the euro slipped after the European Central Bank showed no signs of paring its stimulus program.


MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.1%, putting it on pace to end the week up 1.9%, which would be its best week in six. Earlier in the week, it hit an almost two-year high.


Japan's Nikkei fell 0.1% as March industrial output and household spending fell more than expected and consumer inflation remained tepid. But the index was poised for a 3.3% weekly gain, its strongest since November.


On Wall Street, a slew of strong earnings reports propelled the Nasdaq to an all-time high. The S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average traded flat.

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