Sensex and Nifty ended lower after trading higher till the early afternoon session on Wednesday as the market participants turned cautious ahead of the major second-quarter earnings with the IT bellwether TCS scheduled for tomorrow. BSE Sensex lost 90.42 points to close at 31,834 points and NSE Nifty washed off 32.15 points to finish at 9,984.8 points. However, the benchmark Sensex advanced as much as 174 points to hit the day’s high of 32,098.46 points while the broader Nifty gained 50 points to mark the day’s high of 10,067.25 points. The pessimism amid the investors over the second-quarter earnings and macroeconomic data led to the sell-off in blue-chip shares which resulted in a slump in the stock market today.
The stock of Bharti Airtel was the biggest gainer on Sensex on news reports that the Bharti Group company Bharti Infratel is in talks to acquire $11 billion Indus Towers with a consortium led by KKR & Co. According to a report published by The Times of India, the consortium comprising KKR, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and GIC Singapore will invest $5 billion in a multi-phase acquisition, in which Bharti Infratel, first, will acquire nearly 58% shares of Vodafone, Idea Cellular and Providence Equity Partners in Indus Towers. Shares of Bharti Infratel rose as much as 3.27% to Rs 413.8 before closing up 2.7% at 411 while Bharti Airtel jumped 6% to hit the day’s high of Rs 407 before ending up 5.04% at Rs 403.4 on BSE.
Shares of TCS (up 1.66%), Wipro (up 1.43%), and M&M (up 1.3%) were the other major gainers on Sensex. The stocks of heavyweight companies such as HDFC Bank, SBI, Tata Motors, Kotak Mahindra Bank, ICICI Bank, L&T, Maruti Suzuki, Infosys, and RIL contributed the most to the Sensex drop. Collectively these nine stocks alone shaved off about 136 points while Bharti Airtel and Tata Consultancy Services helped to trim the losses.
Meanwhile, among the regional markets, Japan’s Nikkei 225 index closed at a new 21-year high, rising 0.3% to 20,881.27, a level it hasn’t seen since December 1996. South Korea’s Kospi rose 1% to 2,458.16 and Australia’s S&P/ASX 20 0.6% to 5,770.1. The Shanghai Composite in mainland China edged up 0.2% to 3,388.28 but Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gave up earlier gains to end 0.4% lower at 28,389.57, Associated Press reported.