Nifty ends flat on expiry day, down over 5% in March

The NSE Nifty closed flat with a mild cut on expiry session after showing a recovery in last hour of trade, managing close above the 200 daily moving average of 5151 that touched during the day. Banks, FMCG, telecom and technology stocks stayed lower while auto and power stocks gained.

The BSE benchmark fell 63.01 points or 0.37%, to close at 17,058.61, after hitting intraday low of 16,920.61 due to weak global cues. Meanwhile, the NSE benchmark slipped 15.90 points to 5,178.85.

Siddharth Bhamre of Angel Broking said he might see initial part of April going towards 5000 levels on the Nifty. Accordingly he advised avoiding long positions now.

The March series was quite bad for the market as compared to previous two strong series on heavy inflow of foreign money. The Nifty tanked over 5% in March series while gained 16-18% in January and February series. Confusion over the General Anti-Avoidance Rules, less optimistic Union Budget FY13, rollback of rail fares, weak political situation and less hopes of rate cut in April forced the market to shed gains.

According to Deepesh Pandey, Head - Investments of IIFL Capital Pte, uncertainty over the tax situation post GAAR issue should have lingering impact on the market as there is no clarity on the possible tax impact.

State-owned Bharti Heavy Electricals, which plunged 20% in March series, fell 1.35% today while engineering and construction major Larsen & Toubro fell 2%.

FMCG majors ITC and HUL, which shot up 5-8% in the series, declined nearly 1%.

Country's largest lender State Bank of India was down a percent while its rivals HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank were down 0.4-0.55%.

Shares of Bharti Airtel, country's largest telecom player tumbled 1.6% after The Financial Express reported that the Department of Telecom is set to impose Rs 1000 crore fine on Airtel, Vodafone, Idea for violating 3G licence conditions. Idea Cellular too was down 1.6%.

Tata Consultancy Services and Infosys, top IT services exporters plummeted 1.7% whereas rival Wipro gained over 1%.

Drug maker Ranbaxy Labs topped the buying list, rising 6.5% while Sun Pharma and Dr Reddy's Labs were moderately higher.

Shares of Jindal Steel shot up 4% and Tata Power gained 3%. State-run oil & gas producer ONGC rose 1%.

Auto stocks like Maruti Suzuki, Hero Motocorp and Bajaj Auto rallied 1-1.5%; Tata Motors gained just 0.26% while M&M lost 0.6%.

The market breadth turned positive in late trade; advancing shares outnumbered declining by 815 to 626 on the National Stock Exchange.

Global markets were down today on weak US and European economic data. European markets like France's CAC, Germany's DAX and Britain's FTSE fell around 1%. Asian markets too closed lower, falling 0.7-2%.

At 14:44 hours IST: Volatile Nifty trades lower ahead of expiry; Bharti down 2%

The BSE Sensex continued to trade lower amid volatility, weighed down by banks, technology, telecom and FMCG stocks. Experts believe the last hour could be highly volatile for the market ahead of expiry today and expiry may be close to 5200 level on the Nifty.

The BSE benchmark fell 131 points or 0.76% to 16,990.78, weighed down by 25 stocks. Meanwhile, the NSE Nifty was down 35.55 points or 0.68% at 5159.20.
 
About 50.55% rollover has been completed. Nifty March futures added 20 lakh shares in open interest while April futures added 32 lakh shares in open interest.

Bharti Airtel, country's largest telecom player topped the selling list, falling 2.3%. The Financial Express reported that the Department of Telecom is set to impose Rs 1000 crore fine on Airtel, Vodafone, Idea for violating 3G licence conditions. Idea Cellular tanked 2.5%.

Shares of Infosys, ITC, Larsen & Toubro, TCS, HDFC Bank, Hindustan Unilever, Tata Steel, Bharat Heavy Electricals and Sun Pharma declined 1-1.6%.

State Bank of India, HDFC, ICICI Bank and Wipro were down 0.4-0.8% while Jindal Steel and Hero Motocorp gained more than 2%.

Ranbaxy Labs shot up 5.5%, topping the buy list. Coal India, Kotak Mahindra Bank, BPCL and Jaiprakash Associates climbed 1-1.6%.

The market breadth was neutral and the broader markets were flat.

At 13:53 hours IST: Sensex off day's low; Ranbaxy tops buy list

The BSE Sensex was trading off day's low, showing recovery of more than 60 points from intraday low of 16,920.61. India's most valued stock Reliance Industries was quite supportive, rising with moderate gains while other heavyweights were under pressure. The NSE Nifty managed to claw back above the 5150 level ahead of expiry today.

Experts feel it could be interesting expiry today. They expect a significant volatility in the last hour. According to them, rollovers are below average due to uncertainty and rollover costs are very high. The Nifty April future was trading with 52 points premium at 5,212.

The BSE benchmark declined 125 points to 16,996.35 and the NSE benchmark was down 34 points to 5,161.10.

Banks stocks trimmed their losses in afternoon trade - State Bank of India, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank were down 0.4-0.7%.

Shares of Bharti Airtel, country's largest telecom company fell 1.5% after The Financial Express reported that department of telecom is set to impose Rs 1000 crore fine on Airtel, Vodafone, Idea for violating 3G licence conditions; while rivals Idea Cellular and Reliance Communications tumbled 1.5-2%.

Software services provider Infosys, Wipro and Tata Consultancy Services tanked more than 1%. FMCG majors HUL and ITC went down 1-1.5%.

Engineering and construction company Larsen & Toubro and state-owned Bharat Heavy Electricals dropped 1.5% each.

However, shares of Coal India, Jindal Steel, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Hero Motocorp gained 1-1.7%. Ranbaxy Labs topped the buying list, shooting up 4%.

At 12:43 hours IST: Sensex skids 1%; Infosys, ITC, L&T, TCS under pressure

The BSE Sensex moved down to near day's low. It fell 1% due to weak global cues, depreciating rupee and confusion over the General Anti-Avoidance Rules (GAAR).

European markets opened with moderate gap down today. Major Asian markets too extended fall; Shanghai was down over 1% and Hang Seng fell 1.6%.

The BSE benchmark shed 186 points at 16,935.68 and the NSE benchmark was down 54 points at 5,140.60.

Sources say the government may clarify on promissory notes issue shortly. But key corporate lawyers say, the government needs to clarify on applicability of GAAR. "While indemnity certificates could be a temporary solution, long-term concerns won't be resolved."

The Indian rupee fell 0.74% to 51.15 a dollar, which in tandem with the risk off sentiment that has hit Asian equities and currencies. Domestic oil companies buying dollars is adding to the pressure.

Major largecaps like Infosys, ITC, L&T and TCS plunged 1.7% each. State-owned Bharat Heavy Electricals lost more than 2%, and Tata Steel too fell 2%.

Among banks and financials, State Bank of India, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and HDFC were down 1% each. However, Hero Motocorp gained 1%.

Stocks In News

IVRCL rallied 5.6% as Merrill Lynch recommended buying the stock with a target of Rs 80. The firm says further buying by Essel may lead to the stock trading above fundamental fair value in the near-term. Essel bought more than 10% stake in IVRCL.

Hexaware gained 3.5% at Rs 111 after Credit Suisse upgraded stock to outperform & raised the target price to Rs 145. It also raised earnings per share by 15% for FY14 estimates.

India Cement tanked 4.7%. as Macquarie downgraded the stock to a neutral with a target of Rs 112. They believe CCI is in the last stages of completing its enquiry against cement companies and may announce penalties in the next month or so.

Coal India is among the few nifty gainers, rising nearly 2% ahead of the board meet to decide on fuel supply agreements with power companies. Sources said the proposed agreements may be tweaked to accommodate concerns raised by independent directors.

Unitech fell 2.5% on reports that income tax office has frozen shares owned by the company in the JV with Telenor over a tax demand that Unitech disputes as baseless.

Fortis Healthcare rose 1%. News reports indicate the company is planning to sell a stake to private equity investors. Ahead of that, the promoters will sell part of their stake in the company through the stock auction route, reports CNBC-TV18.

At 11:34 hours IST: Sensex stays down over 100 pts; CIL up, Re falls to 51.16/$

The BSE Sensex showed somewhat recovery from day's low, though it was down more than 100 points. Even the NSE Nifty moved back above the 5150 level amid selling pressure. The Indian rupee extended its fall, losing 38 paise to 51.14 a dollar.

The BSE benchmark was trading at 17,009.11, down 112.51 points and the NSE benchmark fell 34 points to 5,160.45.

Software services provider Tata Consultancy Services and Infosys tanked 1.6% each while rival Wipro was down 0.4%. Cigarette major ITC tumbled 1.6% whereas FMCG player HUL was down 0.5%.

ICICI Bank, India's largest private sector lender trimmed its losses, though it was down 0.4%. State Bank of India, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank were down 0.5-1%.

Even Bharti Airtel and ONGC cut their losses, falling just 0.5%. Capital goods major Larsen & Toubro dropped over 1%.

However, shares of Coal India and Ranbaxy Labs outperformed other largecaps, rising 2-2.5%. Hero Motocorp, top two-wheeler maker gained 1.5%. Reliance Industries, NTPC, Jindal Steel, DLF, Dr Reddy's Labs and Jaiprakash Associates were up 0.4-0.8%.

Shares of liquor baron Vijay Mallya's airline company Kingfisher rose over 1% to Rs 16.70 today, which tanked more than 30% in a month.

Mudar Patherya, Investment Advisor feels JHS Svendgaard Laboratories is an interesting company. "It has got robust outsourcing relationship with Procter & Gamble (P&G). It has got number of tax benefits which it will continue to encash over the foreseeable future," he reasoned. The stock rallied 16.5% to Rs 36.30.

Stocks In News

Alchemist was locked at 10% upper circuit after the company issued 6.4 lakh equity shares at Rs 215 per share (while issue price stands at Rs 64.05) on preferential basis to KDS Corporation Private Limited, an entity belonging to promoter group.

Even the gap in market breadth trimmed; about 625 shares advanced while 691 shares declined on the National Stock Exchange.

At 10:19 hours IST: Sensex falls over 100 pts; Oil India down, Opto Circuits up

The BSE Sensex stayed below the 1,7000 level while the NSE Nifty was struggling at 5,150 level (near its 200 daily moving average of 5,151). The Indian rupee depreciated further, losing 41 paise to 51.18 a dollar in the morning trade.

In the last couple of trading sessions, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) were on the short side, clearly indicating that shorts were being built up for the March series, Karun Mutha of HSBC InvestDirect said. He sees the market consolidating between 5,130-5,150 levels.

The BSE benchmark was down 126 points to 16,994.09 and the NSE benchmark went down 41 points to 5,153.90, though they showed some recovery from the day's low.

Asian markets too were under pressure due to disappointing economic data from US and Europe; even German central bank yesterday expressed concerns on continuous extension of EU firewall. Taiwan Weighted fell 2.4% while Shanghai, Hang Seng, Nikkei, Kospi and Straits Times were down 0.3-1%.

Back home, Tata Consultancy Services and Infosys, country's largest software services exporters fell 1.5-2% while rival Wipro was down 0.5%.

Post adjustment for bonus issue: Oil India was down 3% to 479 after adjustment in the ratio of 3:2. Opto Circuits was up nearly 5% to Rs 199 a share after adjustment in the ratio of 3:10. F&O lot sizes for both have been revised to 625 and 1300 shares, respectively.

Private sector lenders HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank dropped 0.8% each while public sector lender State Bank of India slipped 0.7%.

Telecom major Bharti Airtel and Aditya Birla group company Idea Cellular declined over 1% after The Financial Express reported that departement of telecom is set to impose Rs 1,000 crore fine on Airtel, Vodafone, Idea for violating 3G licence conditions.

Engineering and construction major Larsen & Toubro was down 0.9% and state-owned ONGC fell 0.8%.

However, India's most valued stock Reliance Industries rose 0.25%. Shares of Jindal Steel, Coal India and Hero Motocorp climbed 1% each.

Declining shares outnumbered advancing by 712 to 523 on the BSE.

At 9:20 hours IST: Morning bell: Sensex breaks 17K, Nifty below 200 DMA

The BSE Sensex started off with 150 points gap down, falling below the 17000 level on Thursday, tracking weak global cues and fall in commodities. The NSE Nifty broke the 200 DMA ahead of expiry today.

Global equities were down on weak economic data in US and Europe while WTI crude oil fell USD 2 a barrel due to possible release of strategic oil reserves by US, UK and France, and EIA report showed over 7 million barrels inventory increase.

The BSE benchmark tumbled 153.5 points to 16,968.14 led by fall in 27 components. Meanwhile, the NSE benchmark slipped 50 points to 5,144.65, which was below 200 daily moving average of 5151.

Frontliners like Sterlite Industries, Sesa Goa, ICICI Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Reliance Power, Reliance Communications, Reliance Infrastructure, IDFC, Infosys, Bharti Airtel, SBI, Tata Motors, M&M, L&T and DLF were down.

However, Sun Pharma, Dr Reddy's Labs and HUL were only gainers among largecaps.

The CNX Midcap Index fell 63 points to 7,435. About three shares declined for every share rising on the National Stock Exchange.

In the second line shares, VIP Industries, Yes Bank, Sintex, Indiabulls Power, Lanco Infratech, Unitech, Ashok Leyland, IVRCL and India Cement were down 1.5-2.5%.

BEML was down 3% on defence scam news.

United Breweries, which tanked 4% in early trade, bounced back with 1.4% gains.

Gujarat NRE Coke continued to gain, rising 1.5% today.