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News End-Session

 
Market settles with small gains
11-Apr-18   16:58 Hrs IST

Key benchmark indices settled with small gains following a divergent trend in index pivotals. The barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, rose 60.19 points or 0.18% to settle at 33,940.44. The Nifty 50 index rose 14.90 points or 0.14% to settle at 10,417.15. Extending gains for the fifth trading session, the Sensex settled at almost six-week high while the Nifty hit over four-week closing high. The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was negative.

Shares of public sector oil marketing companies (PSU OMCs) slumped following rise in crude oil prices. Most private sector bank stocks rose. Public sector bank stocks fell.

Traders were cautious ahead of the earnings season beginning Friday with Infosys, and as the US Federal Reserve will release minutes of its 20-21 March 2018 meeting on Wednesday.

A steep rise in crude oil prices overnight also worried investors. Brent crude oil prices crossed $70 a barrel mark. In the global commodities markets, Brent for June 2018 settlement was up 60 cents at $71.64 a barrel. The contract surged $2.39 a barrel or 3.48% to settle at $71.04 a barrel during the previous trading session. Spike in oil prices raises India's import bill as the country imports majority of its crude requirements.

After opening with minor gains, key indices tumbled in morning trade. Indices pared losses and were trading with small losses in mid-morning trade. Key indices bounced back in afternoon trade.

The barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, rose 60.19 points or 0.18% to settle at 33,940.44, its highest closing level since 1 March 2018. The Sensex rose 101.29 points, or 0.30% at the day's high of 33,981.54 in mid-afternoon trade. The index fell 129.51 points, or 0.38% at the day's low of 33,750.74 in morning trade.

The Nifty 50 index rose 14.90 points or 0.14% to settle at 10,417.15, its highest closing level since 13 March 2018. The Nifty rose 25.90 points, or 0.25% at the day's high of 10,428.15 in early trade. The index fell 46.65 points, or 0.45% at the day's low of 10,355.60 in morning trade.

Among the sectoral indices on BSE, the S&P BSE Consumer Durables index (up 1.02%), the S&P BSE Metal index (up 1.62%), the S&P BSE Teck index (up 1.19%) outperformed the Sensex. The S&P BSE Energy index (down 0.43%), the S&P BSE Finance index (down 0.45%) and the S&P BSE Bankex (down 0.69%), underperformed the Sensex.

Among secondary barometers, the BSE Mid-Cap index fell 0.19%, underperforming the Sensex. The BSE Small-Cap index rose 0.20%, outperforming the Sensex.

The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was negative. On BSE, 1,506 shares fell and 1,195 shares rose. A total of 132 shares were unchanged.

TCS (up 2.85%), Sun Pharmaceutical Industries (up 2.5%) and Reliance Industries (up 1.37%) were the top gainers in the Sensex pack.

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone (down 2.42%), Dr Reddy's Laboratories (down 0.58%) and ITC (down 0.58%) were the biggest losers in the Sensex pack.

IT major Infosys rose 0.88%. Infosys announces its Q4 results on Friday, 13 April 2018. In an announcement made after market hours yesterday, 10 April 2018, Calix announced a strategic multi-year partnership with Infosys, that will accelerate communications service provider (CSP) adoption of AXOS, its Software Defined Access (SDA) Platform. Calix and Infosys will jointly invest to co-create new services and value-added offerings on the award winning AXOS platform. Calix is the leading global provider of the cloud and software platforms, systems, and services.

Through this partnership, Infosys will develop and deliver new software modules for the AXOS platform. With these new capabilities, service providers can reduce the cost of operating their networks, improve network intelligence and deliver improved subscriber experiences. The fully abstracted, modular, standards-based architecture of the AXOS platform makes it an ideal innovation platform for technology leaders who want to deliver break-through capabilities to CSPs.

Auto major Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) rose 1.24%. M&M announced during trading hours today, 11 April 2018, that Mahindra Defence signed a Memorandum of Understanding with ShinMaywa Industries, Japan, manufacturer of Amphibious Aircraft US-2, at Defexpo 2018, Chennai. The MoU offers both the companies to join forces in order to set up MRO services / manufacturing and assembling of structural parts & components for US-2 amphibian aircraft. This MOU also envisages both the companies to build up a strategic partnership for future versions of US-2 amphibian aircraft.

Shares of Axis Bank fell 1.19% while Kotak Mahindra Bank rose 1.09% following reports of Kotak Mahindra Bank looking to acquire Axis Bank.

According to media reports, Axis Bank could be a potential acquisition target after its board accepted managing director Shikha Sharma's plea to cut her fourth three-year term to seven months after the Reserve Bank of India reportedly did not approve her re-appointment. Sharma, who joined Axis Bank in 2009, will now step down on 31 December 2018. Her fourth term as managing director and chief executive was originally set to end in June 2021.

With a very short time left in the CEO's term at Axis Bank, RBI's pressure on Axis Bank's management and with an asset quality clean-up exercise continuing, this is the best opportunity for Kotak Bank to acquire or merge with Axis Bank, the brokerage reportedly said. The deal if explored could make the combined entity the second largest private bank in India in terms of advances and largest in terms of branches.

According to a foreign brokerage, the emerging scenario presents a great opportunity for Kotak Mahindra Bank to buy Axis Bank, which has got one of the largest liability/retail asset franchises. Kotak Bank would gain liability and retail asset size enough to rub shoulders with HDFC Bank, the broker added.

Most private sector bank stocks rose. Bandhan Bank (up 2.71%), RBL Bank (up 0.53%), Federal Bank (up 2.22%), IndusInd Bank (up 0.59%) and Kotak Mahindra Bank (up 1.09%) edged higher. Yes Bank (down 2.26%) and HDFC Bank (down 0.06%) edged lower.

Public sector bank stocks fell. IDBI Bank (down 2.83%), Punjab National Bank (down 3.04%), Bank of India (down 2.81%), Canara Bank (down 2.11%), Allahabad Bank (down 1.46%), Union Bank of India (down 2.23%), Andhra Bank (down 2.22%), Syndicate Bank (down 2.73%), State Bank of India (down 2.26%), Bank of Baroda (down 1.54%), Vijaya Bank (down 1.15%) and Punjab & Sind Bank (down 1.92%) edged lower.

Shares of public sector oil marketing companies (PSU OMCs) slumped as crude oil prices rose further after yesterday's rally pushed Brent crude above the $70 per barrel mark. HPCL (down 7.57%), Indian Oil Corporation (down 6.41%) and BPCL (down 7.42%) edged lower. Higher crude oil prices could increase under-recoveries of PSU OMCs on domestic sale of LPG and kerosene at controlled prices. The government has already freed pricing of petrol and diesel.

Himachal Futuristic Communications rose 4.26% after the company said it has bagged advance ourchase order for Rs 579 crore approx from Bharat Sanchar Nigam (BSNL) for building 2G global system for mobile (GSM) base service set (BSS) network in Assam. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 10 April 2018.

Overseas, European equities were trading lower, tracking mixed cues from Asian market, with traders failing to take any significant succour from new signs trade tension between the US and China was easing.

China's factory inflation slowed for a fifth month while the consumer price index retreated from a four-year high. The producer price index rose 3.1% in March from a year earlier, compared with 3.7% in February. The consumer price index climbed 2.1%, the statistics bureau said Wednesday, versus 2.9% in February.

US stocks surged on Tuesday, 10 April 2018, thanks to a less-aggressive stance on trade taken by Chinese President Xi Jinping. Xi's conciliatory comments on tariffs sent prices of risky assets such as global equities and commodities higher.

Chinese President Xi said that Beijing plans to give foreign companies greater access to financial and manufacturing sectors. He also talked about a cut in tariffs on car imports and an improvement in protection of intellectual property, among other measures.

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