Bullish outlook: IT, pharma stocks expected to hog limelight in 2014

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IT sector has outperformed in 2013, leaving behind other sectors by greater difference. IT sector has outperformed in 2013, leaving behind other sectors by greater difference.
SummaryBSE IT index was best performer among sectoral indices in 2013, outperforming benchmark index Sensex.

three years."

"Expect export oriented sectors like IT to continue to benefit from rupee depreciation seen last year. Telecom is another sector which might deliver strong earnings due to return of pricing power and reduction in competitive intensity," Goel added.

Another analyst, Paras Bothra, VP, Equity Research Ashika Stock Broking said "IT, financials (on interest rates coming lower and economy picking up) and beaten down infrastructure stocks will be the biggest out-performers for 2014.

"IT seems to be the most confident of all and is completely insulated from vagaries of domestic turbulence if any," he said.

Marketmen believe that growth phase coming back in the US will benefit IT companies the most.

On sectors that are likely to lag behind in the New Year, Saraswat said, "Real estate, oil and gas sectors are likely to under-perform in 2014 due to policy hindrances and sluggish demand. Also, we maintain cautious outlook for banking sector, due to rising NPAs in most banks and also due to rising interest rates environment."

Marketmen said the key events to watch out for in 2014 are the Union Budget, general elections, global growth and consequent US taper.

"While we think it is unlikely, we remain watchful of any fiscal expansion by the government before the general elections," Patnaik said.

"The key market drivers in 2014 would be the local inflation trend, Lok Sabha elections and the pace of recovery to potential GDP growth levels. In the near-term, we would expectantly look at Q3 earnings where we believe the lack of a festive season boost could dampen growth (and therefore earnings)," he added.

According to Saraswat: "Trend in inflation, rupee and interest rates will impact market trend. Global market cues, FIIs investments and signs for economic improvement, all these will play important role in coming year."

On the outlook for 2014, Saraswat said: "Markets are following long-term uptrend. In 2014, we expect Sensex to gain around 11-13 per cent, which means it has likely target of 23,000-23,700. Also, the downside seems limited up to 5-7 per cent, with Sensex having good support near 19,500".

"First half of 2014 will be highly volatile for obvious reasons like the legislative election, expectation of monsoon and tapering effect of US Federal Reserve. But the year end is likely to be 7,000 plus for Nifty, on back of growth returning, interest rates coming lower and inflation remaining benign." Bothra added.

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