Mumbai, May 19 (IANS) The Indian equity markets on Friday closed on a flat note after a volatile trade session, as investors’ booked profits. However, a key index scaled a new high during the intra-day trade, as healthy buying in banking and FMCG stocks buoyed sentiments.
The 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE touched a new high of 30,712.35 points during the intra-day trade. It had touched a high of 30,692.45 points intra-day on May 17.
A rebound in global cues and the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council’s fitment of almost all goods as well as services in the tax slabs aided the markets to recover from lower levels.
However, outflow of foreign funds and caution ahead of derivatives’ expiry next week capped gains.
The BSE Sensex closed at 30,464.92 points — up 30.13 points or 0.10 per cent from its previous close at 30,434.79 points.
On the other hand, the wider 51-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed at 9,427.90 points — down 1.55 points or 0.02 per cent.
“Markets ended flat on Friday after an extremely volatile session. Gains caused by firm global indices and reports of the GST Council finalising rates for most goods were mostly offset by profit booking,” Deepak Jasani, Head (Retail Research), HDFC Securities, told IANS.
“Broad market indices like the BSE mid-cap and small-cap indices fell more thereby underperforming the Sensex. Major Asian markets ended higher, barring the Straits and Taiwan indices, while European indices like FTSE 100, CAC 40 and DAX traded higher.”
In terms of the broader markets, the S&P BSE mid-cap index slipped by 0.72 per cent and the small-cap index by 0.88 per cent.
Anand James, Chief Market Strategist, Geojit Financial Services, said: “With currencies remaining volatile and with derivatives expiry approaching, investors chose to lock in gains on the last working day of the week.”
On the currency front, the rupee strengthened by 20 paise to 64.64-65 per US dollar from its previous close of 64.84-85.
In investments, provisional data with the exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold stocks worth Rs 988.70 crore, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) purchased scrips worth Rs 349.21 crore.
“FMCG shares got an uplift from the GST tax rates finalisation, with shares of ITC and HUL hitting a fresh all-time high,” Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls, told IANS.
“IT sector stocks traded down on profit booking, while cement and power sector stocks outperformed the bearishness in the market on strong buying support.”
Sectorwise, the S&P FMCG index rose by 176.12 points, the banking index by 100.19 points and the power index by 4.23 points.
On the other hand, the S&P consumer durables index fell by 162.20 points, the automobile index by 138.51 points, and the oil and gas index by 113.79 points.
Major Sensex gainers on Friday were: ITC, up 2.82 per cent at Rs 285.90; Hindustan Unilever, up 2.04 per cent at Rs 1,007.55; Axis Bank, up 1.83 per cent at Rs 500.85; State Bank of India (SBI), up 1.72 per cent at Rs 308.15, and Tata Motors, up 1.08 per cent at Rs 442.95.
Major Sensex losers were: Asian Paints, down 2.43 per cent at Rs 1,122.20; Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M), down 1.35 per cent at Rs 1,333.10; HDFC, down 1.16 per cent at Rs 1,521.30; Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), down 1.08 per cent at Rs 2,506.80; and Power Grid, down 1.06 per cent at Rs 205.90.