Markets settle holiday-truncated week lower, Nifty ends at 9,150
The benchmark indices on Thursday settled the holiday-truncated week lower after index heavyweight Infosys’ revenue guidance and plan to distribute cash to shareholders fell short of expectations, raising concerns at the start of the March quarter earnings.
The geopolitical worries, after the United States launched cruise missiles against an air base in Syria last week and fears of a new weapons test by North Korea, also contributed to the losses.
Investors also took cues from the index of industrial production (IIP) data, which contracted in February and consumer price index (CPI)-based inflation data, which edged up in March.
The S&P BSE Sensex settled at 29,461, down 182 points, while the broader Nifty50 ended at 9,150, down 53 points. For the week, the Sensex shed 245 points or 0.8%, while the Nifty slipped 47 points or 0.5%.
In the broader market, the S&P BSE Smallcap index outperformed to gain 0.2%, while S&P BSE Midcap remained little changed.
The breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was slightly positive. On the BSE, 1,458 shares rose and 1,441 shares fell. A total of 149 shares were unchanged.
Nifty IT index (down 2.4%) was the leading sectoral loser, dragged by Infosys, which was also the top loser on Sensex and Nifty. The stock shed 3.7% to Rs 933 on NSE after country’s second largest software services firm saw 2.8% decline in net profits to Rs 3603 crore for the quarter ended on March 31, 2017.
The Bengaluru-based bellwether forecast revenue guidance of 6.5% to 8.5% for fiscal year 2018, indicating that the woes for IT services firms continue.
TCS also fell over 2% to Rs 2,335 ahead of its March quarter numbers scheduled for April 18.
Another software products company Mastek, however, hit 52-week high of Rs 234, up 11% on BSE in intra-day trade, on the back of heavy volumes. It settled at Rs 220, up 4%. The company is scheduled to report its earnings on April 20.
Financial stocks continued to rise with the Nifty PSU Bank index gaining 0.4%. Up to Wednesday’s close, the index has risen nearly 18.4%.
Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL), meanwhile, entered into the elite league of corporate entities with a market value of over Rs 2 lakh crore after the stock price of the company hit new high on the BSE.
IOCL, the oil marketing giant, with the m-cap of Rs 205,113 crore came in at number ninth position in overall m-cap ranking, the BSE data showed. The company surpassed the fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) major Hindustan Unilever (HUL), which held m-cap of Rs 200,635 crore.
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