Markets pared intra-day gains and were trading flat amid weak Asian shares and political uncertainty in Greece. Further, selling by foreign funds on Tuesday also dampened investor sentiment.
At 13:30PM, the 30-share Sensex was down 7 points at 27,790 and the 50-share Nifty was trading flat at 8,340.
(Updated at 12:45PM)
Markets firmed up in noon trades on Wednesday, shrugging off weak Asian cues, with bank shares leading the gains.
At 12:45PM, the 30-share Sensex was up 77 points at 27,874 and the 50-share Nifty was up 25 points at 8,366.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers in equities to the tune of Rs 222 crore on Tuesday, stock exchange data showed.
The Indian rupee was trading lower at Rs 61.94 to the US dollar compared to the previous close of Rs 61.88.
Asian markets were trading mixed with Japanese shares losing the most while shares in China rebounded after the sharp fall on Tuesday. Japan’s benchmark Nikkei ended up 2.3% above 17,000 at 17,412.58. Straits Times and Hang Seng were up 0.4-0.6% each.
BSE Power index was the top sectoral gainer up 1.3% followed by Bankex, Consumer Durables and Power indices among others. FMCG was the sole loser down 0.2%.
In the banking pack, SBI, ICICI Bank, Axis Bank and HDFC Bank were up 0.6-2% each.
ONGC was up 2.2%. On Tuesday, finance minister, Arun Jaitley informed the parliament that the government has finalized plans to sell a part of its stake in Coal India, ONGC and NHPC under its disinvestment programme for the current fiscal year. Coal India was up 0.4%
Power and metal shares have firmed after they ended lower on Tuesday as the Supreme Court on Monday dismissed nearly 20 applications of power and steel companies seeking exemption from its judgment which cancelled 204 coal mining licences issued since 1993.
In the power segment, Tata Power was up 2.6%, Coal India rose 0.4% and NTPC gained 0.7%.
Among the metal gainers, Sesa Sterlite up nearly 2% while Tata Steel and Hindalco have gained 0.8-1% each.
Meanwhile, India’s steel exporters of hot- rolled carbon steel flat products to the United States got a major relief after an appellate body of the World Trade Organization (WTO) asked Washington to amend a law on the basis of which it imposed countervailing duty (CVD) up to 577 per cent on these products.
The case involved US duties imposed because a portion of the iron ore used to produce Indian steel pipe came from NMDC, a public sector company. NMDC supplies raw material to steelmakers such as Tata, Essar and Jindal.
Auto shares are trading mixed. Hero Motocorp has gained over 1%. According to news reports, the company is tying up with Snapdeal to sell motorcycles on the online platform. Tata Motors was up 0.8% while Maruti Suzuki and Bajaj Auto are trading marginally lower.
FMCG majors were among the top losers with ITC and HUL down 0.7-0.8% each.
Reliance Industries was down 0.3%. Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) India and China’s Shandong Ruyi Science and Technology Group Co Ltd — the latter through its wholly owned subsidiary — have executed definitive agreements for a joint venture in textiles.
Among other shares, Max India were up over 5%, extending its previous day’s 1% gain on NSE, after the Parliamentary Select Committee gave its recommendations on amendments to the Insurance Act that seek to raise foreign direct investment (FDI) cap to 49%.
In the broader market, the BSE Mid-cap and Small-cap indices were up 0.9% each.
Market breadth was strong with 1,556 gainers and 1,017 losers on the BSE.