The News International Team
The market lost ground on Friday, for the first time in last eight sessions, especially ahead of Union Budget week. Profit booking in banking & financials, technology and select oil stocks dragged the market.
The 30-share BSE Sensex declined 230.86 points to 29231.41 and the 50-share NSE Nifty slipped 61.70 points to 8833.60. However, the broader markets outperformed benchmarks; the BSE Smallcap index gained 0.45 percent.
Market experts feel overall the market has been consolidating around 8800-8900 levels ahead of Budget (to be announced on February 28). Budget may decide the market trend from next month onwards, they say.
Nirmal Jain, chairman, IIFL says it is unlikely to see a big rally or crash in market till Budget.
Jain believes the government is moving in the right direction and all circumstances are conducive for a ‘historic’ Budget. Meanwhile, Tushar Pradhan of HSBC global asset management says markets across the world are witnessing major geopolitical risks, Budget will be keenly watched by foreign investors.
For the week, the Sensex gained 0.5 percent and Nifty rose 0.3 percent while the CNX Midcap index advanced 0.8 percent and BSE Smallcap climbed 1.7 percent.
Reliance Industries was the biggest loser on Sensex, down 3 percent. Shares of ICICI Bank, Infosys, HDFC, Larsen & Toubro, Bharti Airtel, Wipro, Maruti Suzuki and Tata Power were other prominent losers, falling 1-2.7 percent.
JSPL continued to be in focus for the second consecutive session today. The Naveen Jindal-led company failed to qualify to bid for the Gare Palma IV/1 coal block while the same company won Gare Palma IV/2 & 3 coal blocks yesterday (that pushed stock 25.6 percent higher yesterday). The stock lost 0.7 percent today.
However, state-run power equipment maker BHEL topped the buying list on Sensex, up 5.2 percent followed by FMCG major ITC with 1.8 percent upside.
In the broader space, SpiceJet surged 20 percent on CCI nod for Ajay Singh’s takeover. Ajay Singh told CNBC-TV18 that the first tranche of money will come in by next week and the final tranche by April-end.
Mastek gained 8 percent as the software services provider says its subsidiary Majesco filed Form S-4 with SEC for listing on NYSE and for merger of Cover-All Tech with arm.
Aurobindo Pharma was up 3 percent after Bank of America Merrill Lynch reiterated its buy rating on the stock. The brokerage house sees 38 percent upside potential from current price level.
ITD Cementation shot up 19 percent on winning order worth Rs 2,168 crore from Bharat Mumbai Container Terminals Private Limited (BMCT), for dredging & reclamation works on part of the phase-1 development of fourth container terminal at JN Port, Mumbai.
About 1492 shares advanced while 1437 shares declined on the Bombay Stock Exchange.
On global front, European markets like France’s CAC and Germany’s DAX fell 0.5 percent amidst continued uncertainty over Greece. On data front, German producer prices showed further fall in January, leading to increased fears that region is falling into a deflationary spiral.