Sensex slips 45 points, RIL falls 2.75%; Rupee hits all-time low

The benchmark indices ended flat on Friday amid weakness in the rupee, which hit a new low breaching 71 per dollar mark for the first time earlier today.

The S&P BSE Sensex ended at 38,645, down 45 points while the broader Nifty50 index settled at 11,680, up 4 points.

Among sectoral indices, the Nifty Pharma index rose 2.7 per cent led by a rise in Lupin and Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories. The Nifty IT index, too, settled 1.8 per cent higher led by Tech Mahindra and MindTree. However, Nifty Bank index slipped 0.15 per cent due to a fall in YES Bank’s shares.

The rupee slumped to a fresh record low of 71 against the dollar for the first time ever by falling 26 paise on persistent demand for the US currency amid rising crude prices. At the Interbank Foreign Exchange (Forex) market, the local currency opened lower at 70.95 a dollar and slipped further to hit its lifetime low of 71 from its previous close of 70.74.

J B Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals rose 1.51% to Rs 342.20 on BSE after the company’s board of directors the buy-back of equity shares. The announcement was made during market hours today, 31 August 2018.

Shares of Larsen & Toubro (L&T) hit an over two-month high of Rs 1,374 per share, up 2%, gaining 11% in the past two weeks after the company announced a share buyback proposal. In comparison, the S&P BSE Sensex was up 2% during the same period. The stock was trading at its highest level since June 4, 2018, on the BSE.

Completion of its Mumbai power business sale to Adani Transmission and the plan to cut debt sharply from the earlier Rs 220 billion to Rs 75 billion and become a debt-free company by next year pushed the Reliance Infra (RInfra) stock higher by over 7 per cent to Rs 477 levels on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) in intra-day deals on Thursday in an otherwise weak market.

Shares of pharmaceutical companies were on a roll with the Nifty Pharma index set to post its sharpest rally in past nine years on the back of a strong rally in Sun Pharmaceutical Industries, Aurobindo Pharma, Glenmark Pharma and Dr Reddy’s Laboratories. The pharma index hit a fresh 52-week high of 10,390 in intra-day on Friday, rallied 13% thus far in the month of August. In comparison, the Nifty 50 index was up 2.6% during the month. During the month of June, the pharma index had soared 11.6% against a 0.2% decline in the benchmark index.

The stock of Balkrishna Industries has gained over 37 per cent in the last two months, on strong June quarter results and expectations of an uptick in global demand for off-the-road tyres. Brokerages have re-rated the stock after the quarterly results, given they expect robust volume growth and low-cost operations to reflect both on revenue and earnings trajectory over the next two years.

Shares of information technology (IT) companies continued their upward journey with Nifty IT and the S&P BSE IT index hitting their respective new highs on weak rupee against the US dollar. Nifty IT index (15,796) and the S&P BSE IT index (15,578), up nearly 2% each have touched new high on Friday.

Shares of YES Bank hit an 8-week low of Rs 338 per share, down 7% in early morning trade on the BSE on the back of heavy volumes.

Here are some picks from the week gone by.

Company: Yes Bank CMP: 343.00 Mastermind

Company: Maruti Suzuki CMP: 9099.00 Mastermind

Company: Dewan Housing CMP: 666.65 Mastermind

Company: Gujarat State Fertilisers CMP: 120.05 Mastermind

Company: Lupin Ltd. CMP: 931.50 Mastermind

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