Strong recovery seen in closing hours; Sensex, Nifty end flat

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on March 22, 2021

Buying seen in mid- and small-cap stocks

Benchmark indices on Monday witnessed a strong recovery during closing hours to end marginally lower. The market remained volatile during the day amid mixed global signals.

Global stocks turned weak on rising US yield. This along with the new Covid-19 cases and its likely impact on economic activity continued to worry investors.

Binod Modi, Head Strategy at Reliance Securities, said: “Domestic equities traded lower today as mounting concerns pertaining to rise in Covid-19 cases in various part of the country and resultant restrictions continued to weigh on investors sentiments. Further, weak global cues and higher USA bond yields kept markets nervous.”

The BSE Sensex closed at 49,771.29, down 86.95 points or 0.17 per cent. It recovered from the day's low of 49,281.02. The Sensex hit an intraday high of 49,878.77. The Nifty 50 closed at 14,736.40, down 7.60 points or 0.05 per cent. It hit an intraday high of 14,763.90 and an intraday low of 14,597.85.

As many as 1,597 scrips have advanced on the BSE, 1,446 declined while 221 remain unchanged. In all, 165 securities hit their 52-week high while 72 hit their 52-week low.

Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services said, "Fear of the second wave of Covid-19, elevated bond yield and weak global cues is weighing on the domestic market. The expectation of rise in inflation is also impacting the market. The market has marched well in anticipation of faster economic recovery and is taking a breather given tightening restrictions and an increase in future interest rate, spiking fear of a slower recovery."

S Ranganathan, Head of Research at LKP Securities said, "Markets opened weak on fears of the recent spike in coronavirus infections in a few states. Afternoon Trade however witnessed a recovery led by cement stocks ( both large and midcap) with support from Technology stocks"

IT, Pharma gain

Adani Ports, Britannia, TCS, Tech Mahindra and Sun Pharma were among the top gainers on the Nifty 50 while IndusInd Bank, Powergrid, ICICI Bank, Tata Motors and HDFC Bank were among the top laggards.

“Strong buying was seen in IT, FMCG and Pharma space, while Financials and Automobiles witnessed selling pressure. Notably, investors lapped-up quality midcap and small-cap stocks after recent corrections in these spaces,” said Modi.

Nifty Pharma gained 1.57 per cent while Nifty FMCG and Nifty IT were up by 1.70 per cent and 1.85 per cent, respectively.

Banks, auto under pressure

Banking stocks further dragged indices down as financials and automobiles faced intense selling pressure. Among the sectoral indices, Nifty Bank was down 1.63 per cent. Nifty Private Bank slipped the most ending 1.70 per cent lower.

However, broader indices outperformed benchmark indices. On the NSE, all broader indices except Nifty Smallcap 50 closed in the green. Nifty Smallcap 50 closed flat. Nifty Midcap 50 was up 0.65 per cent at closing. The S&P BSE Midcap was up 1.04 per cent while the S&P BSE Smallcap was up 0.76 at closing.

Published on March 22, 2021

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