Benchmarks trade with modest gains; India VIX falls 5%

March 02,2021

The equity barometers were trading with modest gains in afternoon trade. The Nifty was hovering above 14,800 level. Auto, IT and pharma stocks were in demand.

At 12:20 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, jumped 198.01 points or 0.40% at 50,047.85. The Nifty 50 index gained 74.50 points or 0.50% at 14,836.05.

In the broader market, the S&P BSE Mid-Cap index rose 0.96% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index added 0.93%.

The market breadth was positive. On the BSE, 1,617 shares rose and 1,142 shares fell. A total of 192 shares were unchanged.

Derivatives:

The NSE's India VIX, a gauge of market's expectation of volatility over the near term, fell 4.72% to 24.415. The Nifty 25 March 2021 futures were trading at 14,837.50, at a premium of 1.45 points as compared with the spot at 14,836.05.

The Nifty option chain for 25 March 2021 expiry showed maximum Call OI of 23.6 lakh contracts at the 16,000 strike price. Maximum Put OI of 33.7 lakh contracts was seen at 14,000 strike price.

Buzzing Index:

The Nifty Pharma index rose 0.44% to 12,146.30. The index added 1.83% in the past two sessions.

Lupin (up 2.16%), Alkem Laboratories (up 2.14%), Cipla (up 1.43%), Sun Pharmaceutical Industries (up 0.69%) and Cadila Healthcare (up 0.60%) were the top gainers in Pharma segment.

Stocks in Spotlight:

NMDC gained 0.30%. The state-owned company's iron ore sales climbed 11.68% to 3.25 million tonnes (MT) in February 2021 from 2.91 MT in February 2020. Iron ore production jumped 19.14% to 3.86 million tonnes (MT) in February 2021 from 3.24 MT in February 2020.

Coal India fell 0.68%. The state-run company's coal production, on a provisional basis, fell 6.6% to 61.9 million tonnes (MT) in February 2021 as against 66.2 MT in February 2020. Coal India's coal offtake in February 2021 stood at 51.2 million tonnes (MT), down 6.2% from 54.6 MT in February 2020. Sequentially, coal production rose 2.31% while offtake slipped 3.93% in February 2021 over January 2021.

Coronavirus Update:

Total COVID-19 confirmed cases worldwide stood at 11,44,28,987 with 25,38,582 deaths. India reported 1,68,358 active cases of COVID-19 infection and 1,57,248 deaths while 1,07,98,921 patients have been discharged, according to the data from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.

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