Sensex scales near 6-month peak; boosted by return of foreign portfolio investors

By: and |
Mumbai | March 12, 2019 2:27 AM

The overseas investors have shopped Indian shares worth $3.7 billion since January, against the selling of $4.6 billion in 2018.

sensex, stock market, nse, bseThe overseas investors have shopped Indian shares worth $3.7 billion since January, against the selling of $4.6 billion in 2018.

The return of foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) to the equity market and enhanced prospects of a second term for the Narendra Modi-led government cheered equity investors, with the benchmark indices on Monday closing their highest level in six months.

While the Sensex added 382.67 points, or 1.04%, to close the session at 37,054.10 points, the broader Nifty50 gained 132.65 points, or 1.2%, to end at 11,168.05 points.

The overseas investors have shopped Indian shares worth $3.7 billion since January, against the selling of $4.6 billion in 2018. On the other hand, between January and now, the domestic institutional investors sold shares worth $45.1 million. Though the late emergence of buying in select counters brought down the divergence between mid-cap and broader indices, the rally in the benchmark Sensex is largely being driven by a handful of stocks such as Reliance Industries (RIL), HDFC Bank, Axis Bank and ICICI Bank. These four firms together have contributed about 3,000 points to the Sensex rally of 3,746.96 points in the last one year. The index gained 11.3% during the same period.

However, despite the recent rally, about 68% of the companies with a minimum market capitalisation of `1,000 crore are trading in the red in the last one year. Of the 725 companies in this universe, 38% of the companies have lost more than 20% of their value.

With the Monday’s gain, the BSE Small cap index has turned positive so far in 2019, after plunging as much as 23.5% in 2018, whereas the BSE Mid cap index is just shy away of 343.79 points, or 2.2%, to erase its this year’s loss.

Power, oil and gas, PSU, metal, banking, auto, capital goods, infrastructure and healthcare sector stocks witnessed heavy buying through the session. Bharti Airtel emerged the best performer among Sensex constituents by surging 8.08%, followed by PowerGrid by 3.90%.

Other prominent gainers included Coal India, RIL, Vedanta, Tata Steel, Asian Paint, Hero MotoCorp, SBI, ONGC, Yes Bank, Bajaj Auto, ICICI Bank, M&M, Maruti Suzuki, Kotak Bank, Sun Pharma, Bajaj Finance, HUL, HDFC, L&T, ITC, Tata Motors, Axis Bank and HDFC Bank, rising up to 3.80%.

However, TCS, HCL Tech, NTPC, IndusInd Bank and Infosys ended in the negative zone with fall of up to 0.41%.

Barring IT, all the BSE sectoral indices ended in the green, with oil and gas index rising 2.85%, metal 2.50%, consumer durables 2.32%, PSU 2.30%, auto 2.24% and power 2.04%.

The broader markets too displayed a firm trend with the BSE mid-cap index surging 1.96% and the small-caps index rising 1.61% as investors accumulated recently beaten down stocks available at prevailing attractive levels.

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