Indices drop for 4th session; Nifty ends below 15,000

February 19,2021

Domestic indices declined for fourth consecutive session on Friday. Rising COVID-19 case and mixed global cues triggered profit selling in domestic shares. The Nifty ended below the 15,000 mark. Banks, metals and pharma shares tumbled.

As per the provisional closing data, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, dropped 434.93 points or 0.85% at 50,889.44. The Nifty 50 index lost 137.2 points or 0.91% at 14,981.65.

Selling was broad based. The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index slipped 1.48% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index fell 0.56%.

Sellers outnumbered buyers. On the BSE, 1,206 shares rose and 1,750 shares fell. A total of 175 shares were unchanged.

Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares worth Rs 903.07 crore, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs), were net sellers to the tune of Rs 1,217.34 crore in the Indian equity market on 18 February 2021, provisional data showed.

Buzzing Index:

The Nifty Bank index tumbled 2.56% to 35,651.25. The index lost 4.44% in four days.

Bank of Baroda (down 5.75%), SBI (down 4.5%), Punjab National Bank (down 4.22%), Axis Bank (down 4.09%), Federal Bank (down 3.9%), ICICI Bank (down 3.8%), Bandhan Bank (down 2.76%) and RBL Bank (down 2.1%) tumbled.

Stocks in Spotlight:

Ambuja Cements fell 2.69%. The company reported 41% rise in standalone net profit to Rs 497 crore in Q4 December 2020 from Rs 352 crore in Q4 December 2019. Volumes grew by 7% YoY and supported by good price this has resulted in a 14% YoY growth in net sales. Net sales during the quarter stood at Rs 3,468 crore compared to Rs 3,038 crore in the corresponding quarter of the previous year. Total operating cost per ton declined by 2% YoY supported by operational efficiency programs in the plants as well as logistics efficiencies. These have been partly compensated due to impact of rising fuel costs. EBITDA during the quarter ended December 2020 stood at Rs 768 crore rising by 40% YoY. The operating EBIT stood at Rs 642 crore in Q4 December 2020, showcasing a robust growth of 61% YoY.

IDFC FIRST Bank jumped 7.8%. The bank said its board approved raising of funds for an amount aggregating up to Rs 3,000 crore, in one or more tranches, on such terms and conditions as it may deem fit, by way of issuance of securities, through one or more permissible mode(s), including but not limited to a Private Placement, Qualified Institutions Placement, Follow-on Public Offering or a combination thereof.

NMDC fell 1.46%. The state-run firm said that its Donimalai iron ore mine has restarted operations. The PSU miner informed that after obtaining the lease extension of Donimalai Iron Ore Mine (ML-2396) for 20 years w.e.f. 3 November 2018 from Govt. of Karnataka (GoK) and completing the associated statutory requirements, the said Donimalai Iron Ore Mine was restarted on 18 February 2021 forenoon.

Savita Oil Technologies surged 7.25% after the company said its board approved a proposal to buyback equity shares worth upto Rs 35.14 crore at Rs 1400 each. The aggregate consideration of the buyback will not exceed Rs 35.14 crore. The company will buyback upto 2.51 lakh fully paid-up equity shares, representing upto 1.78% of the total number of equity shares in the total paid-up equity capital of the company.

Engineers India was down 1.2% while Oil India rose 1.52%. A consortium of Engineers India (EIL) and Oil India (OIL) has decided to bid for 61.65% stake of Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL) in Numaligarh Refinery (NRL). The bid is to be submitted through a formal process. EIL is taking the minority stakeholding. EIL's move is aimed at diversification into downstream oil & gas operations. The exact percentage of the stake of OIL and EIL will depend on the extent of Right of First Offer (ROFO) to be exercised by Government of Assam which already holds 12.35% stake in NRL.

DLF lost 1.8%. The realty major on Thursday announced that its material subsidiary DLF Cyber City Developers (DCCDL) has completed the acquisition of 51.8% stake in Fairleaf Real Estate for Rs 779.40 crore. Consequently, Fairleaf has become a wholly owned subsidiary of DCCDL.

Global Markets:

Shares in Europe were trading higher while Asian markets closed on a mixed note on Friday as investors monitor rising bond yields, corporate earnings and a batch of key economic data out of the euro zone.

In Europe, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson will chair a virtual meeting of leaders of the G-7 major economies on Friday, and is expected to outline an ambition to cut the time to develop new vaccines by two-thirds to 100 days. Meanwhile, Germany's regulator on Thursday declared that the AstraZeneca-University of Oxford vaccine was highly effective and said negative side-effects are short-lived.

In Asia, Japan's core consumer prices declined 0.6% in January as compared with a year earlier, according to data released Friday by the country's Statistics Bureau.

U.S. stocks slid on Thursday as investors were discouraged by a worse-than-expected jobless claims reading as well as a weak forecast from Walmart.

Walmart shares dropped sharply after its fourth-quarter earnings fell short of estimates. The big-box retailer sees sales growth slowing this year as the pandemic momentum ebbs.

Meanwhile, the latest jobless claims number signalled a setback in the labor market recovery. First-time filings for unemployment insurance totaled 861,000 last week, the highest level in a month, the Labor Department reported Thursday.

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