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Sensex maintains momentum for fifth day; Nifty nears 18k

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MUMBAI, Aug 18: Equity benchmark Sensex ticked higher for the fifth straight session on Thursday, helped by fag-end buying in select blue-chip stocks amid a largely negative trend in global markets.
A depreciating rupee and rising crude prices in the international market capped the gains in domestic equities, traders said.
In a largely choppy session, the 30-share BSE index ended 37.87 points or 0.06 per cent higher at 60,298 after starting the trade on a weak note. During the day, it hit a high of 60,341.41 and a low of 59,946.44.
Logging its eighth consecutive gain, the broader NSE Nifty climbed 12.25 points or 0.07 per cent to settle at 17,956.50.
“Nifty on August 18 extended its winning streak for the eighth day, the longest in 20 months. Nifty opened lower and swung between gains and losses for the bulk of the session before closing near day’s high,” said Deepak Jasani, head of Retail Research, HDFC Securities.
Kotak Mahindra Bank was the biggest gainer in the Sensex pack, rising 3.45 per cent, followed by Larsen & Toubro, Bharti Airtel, UltraTech Cement, Power Grid, IndusInd Bank, State Bank of India and ITC.
On the other hand, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, Wipro, Infosys, Mahindra & Mahindra, Axis Bank and Nestle were among the laggards.
“After opening on a negative note, the market showed high volatility in the early to mid part of the session. Intraday weakness of mid-part was reversed, and the market shifted into an upside bounce in the second half of the day.”
“A reasonable positive candle was formed on the daily chart, that paced beside the long bull candle of the previous session. Technically, this pattern indicates a sideways range movement in the market at the highs,” Nagaraj Shetti, technical research analyst, HDFC Securities, said.
In the broader market, the BSE midcap gauge gained 0.42 per cent and the smallcap index climbed 0.34 per cent.
Sectorally, BSE realty jumped 1.76 per cent, followed by utilities (1.09 per cent), capital goods (0.91 per cent), industrials (0.90 per cent), bankex (0.68 per cent) and telecom (0.57 per cent).
Energy, healthcare, IT, auto, metal, teck and oil & gas were the laggards.
“Asian stocks fell on Thursday morning after minutes from the last US Federal Reserve meeting indicated the central bank would prioritise fighting inflation ahead of economic growth for longer than some investors had hoped.”
“European stocks recovered from early losses. Eurozone inflation reached a new record high of 8.9 per cent year-on-year in July,” Jasani said.
In Asia, markets in Seoul, Tokyo, Shanghai and Hong Kong ended lower.
Markets in Europe were trading mixed during mid-session deals. Equities on Wall Street ended lower on Wednesday.
“The Fed minutes suggest a continuation of the hawkish stance and this may slightly impact sentiments in the mother market, US. But this is unlikely to impact the bullish sentiments in India since the return of the FIIs has completely altered the market mood and the bulls are calling the shots now,” said V K Vijayakumar, chief investment strategist at Geojit Financial Services.
The rupee depreciated 19 paise to close at 79.64 (provisional) against the US dollar on Thursday.
Meanwhile, the international oil benchmark Brent crude was trading 1.41 per cent higher at USD 94.97 per barrel.
Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) were net buyers in the Indian capital market as they bought shares worth Rs 2,347.22 crore on Wednesday, according to exchange data. (PTI)

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