We had mentioned in Wednesday’s closing report that Nifty, Sensex were struggling to head higher. The major indices of the Indian stock markets suffered a correction on Thursday and closed with losses of upto 0.95% over Wednesday’s close. The trends of the major indices in the course of Thursday’s trading are given in the table below:
Key Indian equity market indices were trading in the red during the afternoon session on Thursday as technology related stocks plunged. Good buying was observed in metal and oil and gas sectors. Selling pressure was seen in IT and technology, media and entertainment (TECK). Cues from Asian markets were in the negative and the major indices of the Indian stock markets also fell accordingly.
The US dollar dropped against most major currencies as investors lowered expectations for an interest-rate hike as early as June. In late New York trading on Wednesday, the euro rose to $1.1400 from $1.1365 of the previous session, and the British pound decreased to $1.4508 from $1.4564. The Australian dollar went up to $0.7472 from $0.7455. The dollar bought 106.86 Japanese yen, lower than 107.29 yen of the previous session. The dollar fell to 0.9587 Swiss francs from 0.9650 Swiss francs, and it inched down to 1.2711 Canadian dollars from 1.2767 Canadian dollars. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said on Monday that further US interest rate-hikes are likely on the way, but did not mention the timing of the hikes. She did not give a time-frame for raising interest rates like she did in May, which was interpreted by many market observers as "dovish".
The Indian rupee did not benefit from the troubles of the US dollar vis-à-vis other currencies. The US dollar was at Rs66.7755, up 0.45% in the afternoon on Thursday. Exporting companies in India are likely to come under revenue pressure. Overall, interest rates and currency markets are likely to have a bearing on FII (foreign institutional investors) investments in Indian stock markets rather than just corporate performance.
The Karnataka government on Wednesday announced a new retail trade policy to attract fresh investments into the state. "The policy relaxes retail norms and listing of food and grocery business under 'essential services' to protect establishments from closing during shutdowns and increases stocking limit," state Law Minister T.B. Jayachandra told reporters after the cabinet approved the policy. The new policy also allows the state labour department to simplify labour laws and prevent workers of retailers from resorting to strike or agitation under the Shops and Establishments Act. "The policy enables business establishments to work long hours and engage women workforce in night shift with conditions to ensure their safety and security," Jayachandra said. The government is of the view that the new policy would generate jobs and create opportunities for taking retail trade to rural areas and expand its presence in cities and towns across the state of Karnataka.
US stocks traded mostly higher as investors shifted their focus from a possible interest rate hike to gains in oil prices. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 30.51 points, or 0.17%, to 17,968.79 on Wednesday. The S&P 500 gained 1.85 points, or 0. 09%, to 2,113.98. The Nasdaq Composite Index ticked up 1.15 points, or 0.02%, to 4,962.90. Oil prices extended recent gains to trade nearly 1% higher on Wednesday. Both Brent and WTI held strong above $50 a barrel in early session, helped by a larger-than-expected US crude stockpile draw. US stocks closed mixed on Tuesday, as Wall Street continued to assess US Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's speech on the US economy.
The top gainers and top losers of the major Indian indices are given in the table below:
The closing values of the major Asian indices are given in the table below: