Sensex snaps 4-day gains on profit-taking; Bajaj Auto up 5%

Equity benchmarks snapped four-day winning streak on Wednesday waeighed down by profit booking in banks and capital goods stocks. However, technology stocks bucked the trend, continuing thier upmove for the second consecutive session.

The Sensex was down 78.86 points to close at 24298.02 and the Nifty fell 22.60 points to 7252.90 but the broader markets remained strong. The BSE Midcap Index gained 1.34 percent and Smallcap rallied 1.84 percent.

Most of experts believe the correction may continue for some more time as the market had seen strong run-up on Lok Sabha election outcome. According to them, cabinet formation and Budget will be next triggers for the market.

Dhananjay Sinha, Head - Institutional Research, Emkay Global Financial Services expects profit-taking going forward .

He says the market participants will be closely watching the upcoming Budget. According to him, that will indicate the new government's intent on public policy.

Sinha believes the 'honeymoon period' for the market will be over post Budget.

BSE Bank and Capital Goods indices declined 1 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively while Realty gained 1.9 percent.

India's largest lender State Bank of India dropped 2.6 percent and its rival Axis Bank was down over 2 percent. Top private sector lenders ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank declined 0.7 percent each. In the capital goods space, Larsen & Toubro and BHEL were down more than 2 percent.

Top telecom operator Bharti Airtel was the biggest loser in the Sensex, falling 2.8 percent while UltraTech Cement and ACC were biggest losers in the Nifty, down 3 percent each. Sources told CNBC-TV18 that UltraTech Cement, ACC and Ambuja Cements (down 1.3 percent) cut product rates by Rs 10-15/bag Pan-India.

Drug maker Sun Pharma was down 1.7 percent after US Food and Drug Administration has issued warning letter to its Karkhadi unit in Gujarat . US FDA said Sun Pharma failed to ensure everyone engaged in drug manufacturing has proper training.

Shares of GAIL, Maruti Suzuki, Hero Motocorp, Tata Steel, Tata Power and Dr Reddy's Labs were down 1-2 percent.

However, Bajaj Auto was the leading gainer in the Sensex, rising 4.7 percent. Sources told CNBC-TV18 that the two-wheeler maker has received fresh orders for 2 and 3-wheelers from Egypt that lifted ban on import of 2-wheelers and 3-wheelers. Bajaj Auto will export 5,500 3-wheelers and 3,500 motorcycles to Egypt in June, say sources.

United Spirits and DLF gained nearly 5 percent. NTPC and Hindalco Industries jumped over 2 percent. Sesa Sterlite and Coal India rallied 1.5 percent each. Infosys and TCS rose around a percent.

In the broader space, state-owned HMT was locked at 20 percent upper circuit after the company says the government will infuse Rs 425 crore in company via new preferential issue. It has increased its authorised share capital to Rs 2,100 crore from Rs 1,450 crore.

Essar group said it would consider delisting of all group units, reports CNBC-TV18 quoting agencies. Essar Ports and Essar Oil gained more than 15 percent. Meanwhile, India's second largest private refiner Essar Oil reported five-fold growth in net profit at Rs 1,008 crore in the quarter ended January-March, driven by higher forex gain, better operational performance and lower finance cost.

Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals (MRPL) gained 10 percent as the company has turned profitable with the net at Rs 1,067 crore in the quarter ended January-March, driven by forex gain, higher other income and better operational performance. It had posted a loss of Rs 62 crore in corresponding quarter of last fiscal.

NIIT jumped nearly 16 percent as it has reported a 4.7 percent growth in net profit at Rs 14 crore in Q4FY14 as against Rs 3 crore year-on-year on better operational performance.

SKS Microfinance was up 9.5 percent after SKS Trust Advisors sold nearly 8.3 percent stake (out of 12.5 percent) in company in block deal today.

However, Punj Lloyd fell 7 percent after it posted consolidated net loss of Rs 382.1 crore in Q4 versus profit of Rs 15.3 crore Y-o-Y.

Advancing shares outperformed declining ones by a ratio 2089 to 879 on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

03:30pm Market Update
Equity benchmarks snapped four-day winning streak on Wednesday. The Sensex was down 78.86 points or 0.32 percent to 24298.02, and the Nifty fell 22.60 points or 0.31 percent to 7252.90.

However, the broader markets outperformed benchmarks with the BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices rising 1.3 percent and 1.8 percent, respectively.

About 2085 shares have advanced, 882 shares declined, and 83 shares are unchanged.

BHEL, Bharti Airtel, Axis Bank, SBI, Larsen & Toubro, UltraTech Cement, ACC and Grasim were top losers, falling 2-3 percent while Bajaj Auto, Hindalco, NTPC, Sesa Sterlite, United Spirits, DLF and Asian Paints gained 2-5 percent.

03:18pm HMT locked at 20% upper circuit
HMT says the government will infuse Rs 425 crore in company via new preferential issue. The company has increased its authorised share capital to Rs 2,100 crore from Rs 1,450 crore.

03:12pm NIIT rallies 15%
IT education provider NIIT has reported a 415 percent growth in net profit at Rs 14 crore in the quarter ended March 2014 as against Rs 2.7 crore in the year-ago period on better operational performance. Revenue increased 5 percent to Rs 232.9 crore from Rs 221.6 crore during the same period.

Consolidated operating profit grew 85 percent to Rs 13.1 crore from Rs 7.1 crore year-on-year and margin too doubled to 6 percent versus 3 percent.

03:05pm Zee Entertainment gains 3%
Zee Entertainment Enterprises matched street expectations with the fourth quarter (January-March) net profit rising 21 percent year-on-year to Rs 217.5 crore on higher revenues and better operational performance.

According to CNBC-TV18 poll estimates, analysts had expected the company to report net profit of Rs 210 crore on total income of Rs 1,100 crore for the quarter.

Total income from operations grew 20 percent to Rs 1,159 crore in the quarter ended March 2014 as against Rs 964 crore in same quarter last year.

Operating profit or earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation rose 29 percent year-on-year to Rs 312 crore and margin expanded by 200 basis points to 27 percent in the quarter gone by.

02:59pm UCO Bank gains post earnings, up 1%
Public sector lender UCO Bank has reported a 5.75 times growth in fourth quarter net profit at Rs 285 crore as against Rs 49.5 crore in same quarter last year.

Net interest income grew 15.9 percent to Rs 1,562 crore in the quarter ended March 2014 as against Rs 1,348 crore in corresponding quarter of last fiscal.

Asset quality improved on sequential basis. Gross non-performing assets (NPA) fell 88 basis points Q-o-Q to 4.32 percent and net NPA declined 68 bps to 2.38 percent in the quarter gone by.

02:50pm Midcaps outperform
Torrent Power (up 13 percent), MMTC Ltd (up 11 percent), Gitanjali Gems (up 9 percent), Eicher Motors (up 7 percent), Motherson Sumi (up 5 percent) and Power Finance (up 4 percent) were top gainers in the midcap sapce.

02:40pm MRPL soars 19% as co turns profitable in Jan-March quarter

Shares of Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals (MRPL) gained as much as 19 percent intraday on Wednesday as the company has turned profitable with the net at Rs 1,067 crore in the quarter ended January-March. Read more

MRPL soars 19% as co turns profitable in Jan-March quarter

02:30pm Market Check: Sensex recovers 100 pts from day's low

The Sensex has recovered 100 points from day's low while the Nifty has managed to claw back above 7250 mark. Reliance Industries, Infosys, HDFC, Bajaj Auto and TCS were major contibutors in the recovery.

02:20pm Consumer mood set to recover fast, bullish on Titan: Credit Suisse
The consumer goods sector, which was reeling under the cyclical slowdown, may see a recovery with the new government focusing on urban growth, said a Credit Suisse report.

Credit Suisse has kept Titan as its top pick. It expects the demand to pick up from its largely urban upper income consumer set and an easing in the regulatory regime on gold. Read more

02:10pm Over 500 stocks on BSE at 52-week high
Over 500 stocks on the BSE have touched fresh 52-week high today. Midcap and smallcap stocks have fancied traders and investors in last few days and incremental buying pushed them to fresh year/multi-year highs in trade.

02:00pm Profit booking in the largecap stocks dragged Sensex lower by 150 points while the Nifty is below 7250 mark. It has been a one-side rally in some of the largecaps and midcap stocks in last few sessions and profit booking was just round the corner.

The midcaps continue to outperform largecaps and CNX midcap index managed to stay in green. The breadth of the market was 2:1 which is slightly on the lower side compared to advance decline ratio of 4:1 yesterday.

The Sensex was down 148.07 points or 0.61% at 24228.81, and the Nifty was down 47.20 points or 0.65% at 7228.30. About 1861 shares advanced, 945 shares declined, and 90 shares were unchanged.

Top gainers in the Nifty were United Spirits (up 4.18 percent), Bajaj Auto (up 3.78 percent), Hindalco (up 1.89 percent), NTPC (up 1.62 percent) and HCL Tech (up 1.50 percent).

UltraTechCement (down 3.49 percent) was the top loser in the Nifty followed by BHEL (down 3.02 percent), ACC (down 2.97 percent), Grasim (down 2.67 percent) and GAIL (down 2.41 percent).

01:50pm NIIT's PAT jump 367 percent, YoY
NIIT has reported a 367 percent growth in net profit at Rs 14 crore in the quarter ended March 2014 as against Rs 3 crore in the year-ago period on better operational performance. Revenue increased marginally to Rs 233 crore from Rs 222 crore during the same period.

Consolidated operating profit nearly doubled to Rs 13.1 crore from Rs 7.1 crore year-on-year and margin too doubled to 6 percent versus 3 percent.The stock was up three percent.

01:40pm Buzzing: Five-fold rise in Q4 profit lift Essar Oil shares 19%
Investors continued to buy shares of Essar Oil on Wednesday after the India's second largest private refiner reported five-fold growth in net profit at Rs 1,008 crore in the quarter ended January-March. Read more


01:25pm Midcaps
In the midcap space, Essar Oil, MMTC, PVR, Rashtriya Chemical and Torrent Power surged 7-13 percent while Punj Lloyd, Sintex Industries, IL&FS Transport, Jaypee Infra and Sadbhav Engineering fell 4-9 percent.

01:20pm Most active shares
Most active shares were Aban Offshore, MMTC, HDFC, SKS Microfinance, SBI, Reliance Industries, Sesa Sterlite and ICICI Bank.

01:10pm Market Expert
The market was rallying even before Narendra Modi-led BJP crossed the 272 mark. Post the Modi victory, what the market saw was a confirmation rally, says Dhananjay Sinha, Head - Institutional Research, Emkay Global Financial Services.

Though the Nifty seems to have topped, the midcaps are continuing to rally. Banking and infrastructure sectors are seeing a strong rebound, he adds.

He says at the moment the market is rallying on robust assumptions of implied GDP growth at 8 percent plus, lot of investments coming in a short period, interest rates coming down, etc,. But meeting these expectations will be a long-drawn process, he adds. Some of the trade will start unwinding. He expects profit taking going forward.

He says market participants will be closely watching the upcoming Budget. The market is looking at Narendra Modi for leadership. Infact he adds, the market is pricing in strong leadership in ongoing rally. But he does not think allocation of key ministries and portfolios will matter much.

Sinha says the upcoming Budget will indicate the new government's intent on public policy. Another thing that will be keenly watched is spending in infrastructure sector in the Budget. He believes the 'honeymoon period' for the market will be over post Budget.

01:00pm Equity benchmarks fell further in afternoon trade weighed down by profit booking in banks, capital goods, healthcare, auto and FMCG stocks. The Sensex lost 177.93 points to 24198.95 and the Nifty declined 56.15 points to 7219.35.

The broader markets trimmed gains to around 0.5 percent from 1.5 percent. About 1779 shares have advanced, 950 shares declined, and 87 shares are unchanged.

BHEL was the biggest loser, falling over 3 percent and its rival L&T declined 2 percent. Cement stocks like UltraTech Cement, ACC and Ambuja Cements dropped 2-3 percent after sources told CNBC-TV18 that these companies cut product rates by Rs 10-15 per bag Pan-India.

GAIL, IDFC, Axis Bank and Sun Pharma declined 2-2.5 percent. Bank Nifty fell over 1.5 percent as top lenders State Bank of India and ICICI Bank tumbled 1.6 percent each while rival HDFC Bank lost 1 percent.

12:55pm Essar Oil on buyers' radar
Investors continued to buy shares of Essar oil on Wednesday after the India's second largest private refiner reported five-fold growth in net profit at Rs 1,008 crore in the quarter ended January-March, driven by higher forex gain, better operational performance and lower finance cost. The stock rallied as much as 19 percent intraday to touch a 52-week high of Rs 92.15.

Total income grew nearly 7 percent to Rs 25,274 crore in March quarter from Rs 23,650 crore in the quarter gone by.

12:45pm M&M in news
Mahindra and Mahindra says the company, as part of aligning its production with sales requirements, would be observing no production days at the company's automotive plants for upto 3 days during the remaining period of May, 2014.

The company further says one of its wholly owned subsidiary viz, Mahindra Vehicle Manufacturers plant at Chakan would also be observing No Production Days for upto 3 days during the remaining period of May 2014.

The management does not envisage any adverse impact on availability of vehicles in the market due to adequacy of vehicle stocks to serve the market requirements.

12:35pm Interview
Shyam Srinivasan, MD & CEO, Federal Bank expects the bank's net interest margin (NIMs) to remain stable in the range of 3.3-3.35 percent in FY15

Banking on the retail and SME segments, Srinivasan expects the credit growth momentum to continue going ahead.

Meanwhile, he added that the private sector lender is well capitalized and is not looking to raise funds at this point of time.

Kerala-based Federal Bank reported a rise of 24.94 percent in net profit at Rs 277.29 crore in Q4FY14 versus Rs Rs 221.94 crore posted in the same quarter a year ago.  Its total income during the last quarter of FY14 rose to Rs 2,017.12 crore, from Rs 1,780.31 crore a year earlier.

12:25pm Buzzings
Mineral stocks like Orissa Mineral, Sarda Energy & Minerals, MMTC and STC gained 7-20 percent while fertiliser stocks namely National Fertilisers, FACT and RCF rallied 11-17 percent.

12:15pm Expert sees consolidation
Laurence Balanco, CLSA says last Friday's Nifty action of hitting a new high and the reversal resembles a 'buying climax' and suggests that the market is set for at least a consolidation/corrective period.

''Going by anecdotal evidence of 2009 Indian and 2013 Malaysian elections, Nifty is likely to enter a consolidation/correction between 7,625 resistance and 6,661-6,902 support over the coming weeks,'' he adds.

12:00pm The market extended losses in noon trade with the Sensex falling 87.99 points to 24288.89 and the Nifty losing 21.95 points to 7253.55 but the broader markets continued to outperform benchmarks for the third consecutive day.

The BSE Midcap Index gained 1.3 percent and Smallcap rallied 1.8 percent. Advancers beat decliners by a ratio of 1865 to 776 on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Capital goods, banks, FMCG and healthcare stocks saw profit booking while technology stocks continued to see buying interest.

In the banking space, top lenders State Bank of India, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank declined 0.7-1.4 percent. Shares of Larsen & Toubro, ONGC, Sun Pharma, Bharti Airtel, Dr Reddy's Labs, GAIL, BHEL and Tata Power lost 1-2 percent.
 
However, two-wheeler maker Bajaj Auto and aluminium major Hindalco Industries surged 4 percent each followed by NTPC with 2.4 percent and Coal India with a percent. IT majors Infosys and TCS gained 0.8 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively.

10:59am Paper Products up 3%
Sources told CNBC-TV18 that Paper Products and Amcor India are in talks to buy Positive Package. The deal involves full or partial sale of Positive Package units and EY India is likely advisor to this deal, say sources.

10:50am Morgan Stanley sees economy doubling by 2015
Morgan Stanley's recent report pegs GDP growth over the next 10 years averaging 6.75 percent. By 2015, it sees the economy more than doubling to USD 5 trillion. At the moment, the economy is less than USD 2 trillion.

The report also states that domestic savings allocated to equities should aggregate USD 230 billion, market cap itself is expected to touch USD 4 trillion by 2025. It also sees India supplying 25 percent of working age population to the world over the next 10 years.

Chetan Ahya, MD and Chief Asia Economist, Morgan Stanley and the author of this seminal report says he is not betting on just prime ministerial designate Narendra Modi. But he is betting on the country's strong demographics and large educated youth. He sees structural and cyclical improvement in the India story. He adds that the strong mandate given to Modi can speed up reforms.

10:40am Sun Pharma slips 1.6%
The US health regulator has warned Sun Pharma it may withhold approval of new drug applications and extend an import ban at its Karkhadi unit in Gujarat if violations of manufacturing norms at the facility are not corrected.

The US Food and Drug Administration said there were reasons to suggest a general lack of reliability and accuracy of data, including missing fundamental raw data, unacceptable data handling practice and inadequate investigation into 'the pervasive practice of deleting (raw) files'.

"Until all corrections have been completed and FDA has confirmed corrections of the violations and deviations and your firm's compliance with CGMP (current good manufacturing practice), FDA may withhold approval of any new applications or supplements listing your firm as a drug product or an API manufacturer," USFDA said, reports PTI.

11:25am MT Educare on buyers' radar
MT Educare gained 3 percent as Abu Dhabi Investment Authority has bought 4,08,758 equity shares of the company at Rs 95.05 apiece through block deal on Tuesday.

However, Merrill Lynch Capital Markets Espana SA SV was the seller.

11:15am FII View
Manish Hemrajani, Oppenheimer says the brokerage house believes the markets are set for a multi-year rally. ''We are raising our March 2015 Sensex target to 28,000 from our pre-election target of 24,500, which equates to 18x FY15 consensus EPS estimates,'' he adds.

Manish further says, ''We favor energy, infrastructure including railways, roads & power, banks and automobiles. Sectors like IT, pharma and consumer staples are likely to underperform.''

11:00am The Nifty remained in tight range due to lack of trigger. The Sensex declined 27.37 points to 24349.51 and the Nifty fell 9 points to 7266.50. Advancing shares outnumbered declining ones by a ratio of 1688 to 761 on the BSE.

Two-wheeler maker Bajaj Auto extended gains to 3.7 percent followed by NTPC, NMDC, United Spirits and Hindalco Industries with 2.5-3 percent. Sesa Sterlite rose 1.59 percent and Coal India gained 1.08 percent.

However, Hero Motocorp, Sun Pharma, Larsen & Toubro, ONGC, Dr Reddy's Labs, UltraTech Cement, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Tech Mahindra topped the selling list, falling 1-3.5 percent.

In the broader space, India's second largest private refiner Essar Oil rallied 15 percent after it reported five-fold growth in net profit at Rs 1,008 crore in the quarter ended January-March as against Rs 200 crore in same quarter last year, driven by higher forex gain, better operational performance and lower finance cost.

Total income grew nearly 7 percent to Rs 25,274 crore in March quarter from Rs 23,650 crore in the quarter gone by.

Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals (MRPL) rose 11 percent as the company has turned profitable with the net at Rs 1,067 crore in the quarter ended January-March of FY14 as against loss of Rs 62 crore in corresponding quarter of last fiscal, driven by forex gain, higher other income and better operational performance.

Net sales of MRPL grew 3 percent to Rs 19,127.5 crore during March quarter as against Rs 18,579.5 crore in same quarter last year. Gross refining margin improved quite significantly to USD 3.18 a barrel in Q4FY14 versus USD 1.98 a barrel in the year-ago period.

10:59am McNally up 4.5%
McNally Bharat Engineering Company says it has received an order for construction of residential accommodation for an army base for a value of Rs 144.19 crore.

10:50am Punj Lloyd tanks 9%
Diversified EPC conglomerate Punj Lloyd reported a net loss of Rs 382.08 crore on a consolidated basis for January-March quarter on the back of decline in income and deferment of settlement of company's claims on some overseas projects.

It had reported a net profit of Rs 15.31 crore for the fourth quarter of 2012-13.
Total income from operations dipped by 26 percent to Rs 2,398.67 crore in the quarter under review over Rs 3,241.92 crore in the corresponding period previous fiscal.
Total expenses, however came down to Rs 2,646.08 crore in Q4 of the last fiscal over Rs 3,059.38 crore, reports PTI.

10:40am Interview
Shyam Srinivasan, MD & CEO, Federal Bank expects the bank's net interest margin (NIMs) to remain stable in the range of 3.3-3.35 percent in FY15 .

Banking on the retail and SME segments, Srinivasan expects the credit growth momentum to continue going ahead.

Meanwhile, he added that the private sector lender is well capitalized and is not looking to raise funds at this point of time.

10:30am Essar Oil and MRPL on strong footing
Deutsche Bank advises buying Essar Oil with a target price of Rs 97 and Centrum maintains buying rating on MRPL with revised target price of Rs 81 from Rs 74 earlier after strong Q4 earnings.

10:20am VIP Industries up 6%
Asia's largest luggage maker VIP Industries reported over three-fold growth in consolidated net profit to Rs 20.3 crore in the fourth quarter (January-March) as against Rs 6.4 crore in same quarter last fiscal, driven by higher revenue.

Consolidated net sales or revenue grew 21.5 percent to Rs 226.6 crore in the quarter ended March 2014 from Rs 186.5 crore in corresponding quarter of previous financial year.

10:10am Market Expert
The formation of the cabinet under the Modi-led BJP government and the annual Budget will be the next big triggers for the market, says Sandeep Bhatia - Senior Executive Director, Kotak Institutional Equities.

Bhatia's views come at a time when there's widespread speculation over who will lead India's Finance Ministry with Arun Shourie and Arun Jaitley being said to be the frontrunners for the same.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Kotak Institutional Conference, Bhatia says despite the current rally, public sector banks (PSBs) are still trading cheap.

10:00am Equity benchmarks continued to consolidate but the broader markets outperformed again with the BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices rising 1 percent each.

The Sensex fell 49.39 points to 24327.49 and the Nifty declined 13.35 points to 7262.15. About 1236 shares have advanced, 686 shares declined, and 58 shares are unchanged.

Capital goods majors L&T and BHEL lost over 1.4 percent. Sesa Sterlite slipped 2 percent on profit-taking followed by Tata Steel and Hindalco Industries with over 0.5 percent.

Shares of State Bank of India, HDFC Bank, ONGC, Bharti Airtel, Dr Reddy's Labs, Hero Motocorp, Coal India and Tata Power dropped 1 percent each.

Sun Pharma trimmed early losses to 0.5 percent from 2 percent. US Food and Drug Administration has issued warning letter to Sun Pharma's Karkhadi unit as it says the company failed to ensure everyone engaged in drug manufacturing has proper training.

However, Bajaj Auto topped the buying list, rising nearly 3 percent. Reliance Industries climbed 1.5 percent, may be due to strong earnings from Essar Oil and MRPL that gained 14-16 percent.

9:55am Punj Lloyd falls 9%
Diversified EPC conglomerate Punj Lloyd reported a net loss of Rs 382.08 crore on a consolidated basis for January-March quarter on the back of decline in income and deferment of settlement of company's claims on some overseas projects.

It had reported a net profit of Rs 15.31 crore for the fourth quarter of 2012-13.
Total income from operations dipped by 26 percent to Rs 2,398.67 crore in the quarter under review over Rs 3,241.92 crore in the corresponding period previous fiscal, reports PTI.

9:50am Essar Oil on fire, up 19%
India's second largest private refiner Essar Oil reported five-fold growth in net profit at Rs 1,008 crore in the quarter ended January-March quarter of FY14 as against Rs 200 crore in same quarter last year, driven by higher forex gain, better operational performance and lower finance cost.

"Company has demonstrated excellent financials backed by solid operating performance, which has resulted in improved gross refining margins, EBITDA and PAT for the quarter," says Suresh Jain, CFO.

Total income grew nearly 7 percent to Rs 25,274 crore in March quarter from Rs 23,650 crore in the quarter gone by.

Gross refining margin improved to USD 10.12 a barrel as against USD 9.06 a barrel year-on-year.

9:40am MRPL surges 15%
Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals (MRPL) has turned profitable with the net at Rs 1,067 crore in the quarter ended January-March of FY14 as against loss of Rs 62 crore in corresponding quarter of last fiscal, driven by forex gain, higher other income and better operational performance.

Net sales grew 3 percent to Rs 19,127.5 crore during March quarter as against Rs 18,579.5 crore in same quarter last year.

Gross refining margin improved quite significantly to USD 3.18 a barrel in Q4FY14 versus USD 1.98 a barrel in the year-ago period.

09:25am FII View
Laurence Balanco, CLSA says last Friday's Nifty action of hitting a new high and the reversal resembles a 'buying climax' and suggests that the market is set for at least a consolidation/corrective period.

''Going by anecdotal evidence of 2009 Indian and 2013 Malaysian elections, Nifty is likely to enter a consolidation/correction between 7,625 resistance and 6,661-6,902 support over the coming weeks,'' he adds.

09:15am Equity benchmarks started off Wednesday's trade on negative note on profit booking and following weak cues from US. The Sensex slipped 27.96 points to 24348.92 and the Nifty lost 10.50 points to 7265.

Sun Pharma topped the selling list in the Sensex, falling nearly 2 percent after US FDA has issued warning letter to its Karkhadi unit.

Coal India, BHEL, Hindalco Industries and L&T declined 1-1.5 percent while TCS, Bajaj Auto, Sesa Sterlite, NTPC, Cipla, HCL Technologies and Asian Paints gained 0.7-1.6 percent.

The Indian rupee has opened lower at 58.70 a dollar on Wednesday, down 7 paise compared to previous day's closing value of 58.63 per dollar.

After snapping 4 days of gains, Pramit Brahmbhatt, Veracity expects rupee to trade positively for the day taking cues from the election rally but importers entry into the markets and profit booking in local equities will keep the rupee under pressure.

According to him, the range for the day is seen between 58.25-59.25/USD.

Asian equities were mixed in trade on Wednesday as investors were cautious ahead of a Bank of Japan monetary policy decision.

Japan's Nikkei 225 Average declined 40.22 points or 0.29 percent to 14,035.03 and Singapore's Straits Times slipped 6.76 points to 3,258.71. South Korea's Seoul Composite was down 1.31 points to 2,009.95, at 8:00 hours IST.

However, Shanghai Composite was up 2.15 points to 2,010.27 and Hang Seng rose 25.88 points to 22,860.56. Taiwan Weighted advanced 2.53 points to 8,890.32.

US markets slipped on talks of rate hikes coming in sooner than expected, with Europe too ending in the red.