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Nifty cracks 1% to settle below 9,450, Sensex falls 200 points

May 18, 2017 17:12 IST

S&P BSE Midcap index and S&P BSE Smallcap were down 2% and 1.3% respectively

Benchmark indices settled the day lower after closing at fresh high in the precious session amid selloff as political turmoil in White House spooked investors, dragged the global markets. The sentiment was also affected by a drop in rupee. It was trading at 6-week low of Rs 64.89/$ .

The dollar was stuck at six-month lows, while Wall Street posted the biggest intra-day slide since September as the allegations of Trump’s interference with the federal investigation have raised uncertainty over his presidency.

The S&P BSE Sensex settled at 30,434, down 223 points, while the broader Nifty50 ended at 9,429, down 96 points.

In the previous session, the 30-share Sensex gained as much as 110 points to hit its fresh record high of 30,692, while the 50-share Nifty added 20 points to notch its all-time high of 9,532.

The broader markets underperformed benchmark indices with the S&P BSE Midcap index and S&P BSE Smallcap down 2% and 1.3% respectively.

"Market reacted to the headwinds surrounding the US political climate and its concerns over the upcoming US economic policies. Since the underlying domestic fundamentals are good, the market participants are likely to get back on every consolidation. Moreover, a close watch on FIIs direction is necessary as INR is depreciating in the meantime," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services in a technical note.

Buzzing stocks

Wipro, TCS, Infosys and Sun pharma were the top gainers while Tata Motors, Bajaj Auto, M&M and Axis Bank lost the most.

Shares of information technology (IT) companies were trading higher in otherwise weak market with the Nifty IT index gaining 1% on weak rupee. During the day, TCS rallied 5%, its highest level since March 15, 2017 but later ended 3.4% higher. Wipro, Tech Mahindra and Infosys were up in the range of 1% to 3%.

The Nifty IT index was the only gainer among major indices, which were all trading in the red.

CESC fell 14% after the company announced restructuring scheme which includes amalgamation of CESC Infra, Spencer's & Music World Retail with the company.

The company also announced stock split of equity shares from Rs 10 per share into 2 shares of Rs 5 and will demerge its business into 4 units, which includes generation business, IT & 2 retail business.

Among other losers, Apollo Hospitals fell 2.45% after an arm of Malaysian sovereign fund Khazanah looked to exit the healthcare provider by selling its remaining 4.78% stake.

United Breweries, brewer of Kingfisher beer, dropped 3.25% after reporting an 87% fall in profit for the March-quarter.

IRB InvIT Fund, the first infrastructure trust to list on the exchanges, made its debut on the exchanges on Thursday at a price of Rs 102.50 per share. It settled 0.2% higher with respect to issue price.

GST Council meet underway

On day one of its crucial meeting in Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council on Thursday approved all nine rules for the rollout of the new indirect tax regime.

The nine rules finalised by the council pertain to composition, valuation, transition, input tax credit, invoice, payment, refund, registration and return.

Exemptions are expected to be taken up before setting the GST rates. GST Council members said that the list of exemptions could be firmed up by Thursday evening. Close to 100 items would be in the exempted category.

Finance Minister Jaitley is learnt to have asked the states to keep exemptions to the bare minimum. "There cannot be 300 items in the exemption list," Jaitley said.

Global markets

Asian stocks fell on Thursday and the dollar was stuck near six-month lows against a basket of currencies as uncertainty mounted over US President Donald Trump's future following reports that he tried to interfere with a federal investigation.

European shares also dropped in early deals as political upheaval in Washington DC continued to weigh.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index was down 0.4%, while Germany's DAX retreated 0.3% and Britain's FTSE 100 fell 0.5%, extending Wednesday's losses.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dropped 0.5% while Japan's Nikkei shed 1.4%. South Korea's KOSPI declined 0.4% and Shanghai and Hong Kong's Hang Seng also fell.

Equities in Asia took cues from Wall Street, where the Dow and S&P 500 both sank about 1.8% overnight following reports that Trump tried to influence a federal probe.

Photograph: Shailesh Andrade/Reuters

Pranati Deva in New Delhi
Source: source