Sensex ekes out small gains; Nifty end almost flat
(06-Nov-2018, 16:31 Hours IST)  

Amid a divergent trend among various index constituents, the key benchmark indices settled with small gains. The Sensex settled a tad below the psychological 35,000 level after moving above and below that level amid volatility in intraday trade.

The market saw a positive opening led by buying demand in index pivotals. Stocks trimmed gains in morning trade. Key indices hovered in positive zone in mid-morning trade. Stocks gyrated in a small range with positive bias in early afternoon trade. Indices firmed up in afternoon trade. Key indices dipped in negative zone in mid-afternoon trade. Stocks regained positive zone in late trade.

The Sensex rose 40.99 points or 0.12% to settle at 34,991.91. The index rose 245.11 points, or 0.70% at the day's high of 35,196.03. The index fell 61.20 points, or 0.18% at the day's low of 34,889.72.

The Nifty 50 index rose 6 points or 0.06% to settle at 10,530. The index rose 76.25 points, or 0.72% at the day's high of 10,600.25. The index fell 32.55 points, or 0.31% at the day's low of 10,491.45.

The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index fell 0.62%. The S&P BSE Small-Cap index fell 0.06%.

The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was just about positive. On the BSE, 1284 shares rose and 1274 shares fell. A total of 154 shares were unchanged.

Among the sectoral indices on BSE, the S&P BSE Consumer Durables index (down 1.79%), the S&P BSE Metal index (down 1.47%) and the S&P BSE Basic Materials index (down 0.92%), underperformed the Sensex. The S&P BSE Telecom index (up 0.94%), the S&P BSE IT index (up 0.99%) and the S&P BSE Teck index (up 1.03%), outperformed the Sensex.

Vedanta (down 6.7%), State Bank of India (down 2.98%), Axis Bank (down 2.67%), Maruti Suzuki India (down 1.31%), IndusInd Bank (down 1.09%), Adani Ports & Special Economic Zone (down 1.08%) and ITC (down 0.79%), were the major losers from the Sensex pack.

TCS (up 2.22%), Yes Bank (up 1.95%), Tata Motors (up 1.69%), Sun Pharmaceutical Industries (up 1.14%), Power Grid Corporation of India (up 1.08%), Bharti Airtel (up 1.04%) and ICICI Bank (up 0.97%), were the major gainers from the Sensex pack.

Index heavyweight Reliance Industries gained 1.37% to Rs 1,103.45.

Two wheeler major Hero MotoCorp fell 0.13%. The company announced after market hours today, 6 November 2018, that it unveiled its new premium motorcycle - the XPulse 200T - at the global platform of the EICMA motorcycleshow in Milan, Italy. The XPulse 200T is a 'Tourer' that offers customers modern technology in retro styling. The motorcycle offers a host of safety and convenience features such as single channel ABS, LED head and tail lamps, digital speedometer with Bluetooth connectivity and turn-by-turn navigation.

Power Grid Corporation of India rose 1.08%. The company's net profit rose 7.9% to Rs 2309.49 crore on 14.2% increase in net sales to Rs 8283.03 crore in Q2 September 2018 over Q2 September 2017. The result was announced after market hours yesterday, 5 November 2018.

Wipro shed 0.29%. The company announced a new partnership with Check Point Software Technologies, a leading provider of cyber security solutions globally, to deliver Check Point's advanced and dynamic cloud security solution, CloudGuard IaaS. This strategic worldwide partnership will further accelerate demand for the CloudGuard comprehensive suite of cloud security products, which are focused on advanced threat prevention and safeguarding enterprise cloud applications, infrastructure, and data against the most sophisticated fifth-generation cyber-attacks threatening organizations today. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 5 November 2018.

HCL Technologies rose 0.96%. Deutsche Bank and HCL Technologies (HCL) announced a strategic partnership to transform the bank's global cheque processing operations. Under the terms of the agreement, HCL will build a cloud-based digital and fully scalable cheque processing platform for the bank. The new IT-platform is expected to go live in 2019. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 5 November 2018.

The new cloud-based IT-platform will enable Deutsche Bank to further reduce the complexity of its IT landscape, decrease cost, increase straight-through processing capabilities and efficiencies in cheques processing. Moreover, through advanced data analytics, the bank will enable its corporate and institutional clients to use data generated out of the platform, to better manage business flows and working capital.

Coal India rose 0.64%. The company said that the Government of India reduced its stake in the company by 3.19% to make its holding stand at 75.13% of the equity share capital of the company. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 5 November 2018.

Adani Gas gained 4.95% after the company announced that in order to leverage India's rapidly growing gas market, the company has planned to invest over Rs 8000 crore in the next 5 years to consolidate its position as the largest private company in the sector. It is noteworthy that India's current city gas distribution (CGD) consumption is about 15-18% of domestic gas production and even at peak demand, consumption will be around 25-30%. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 5 November 2018.

Domestic stock markets will remain shut tomorrow, 7 November 2018, on account of Diwali Laxmi Pujan and again on Thursday, 8 November 2018 on account of Diwali Balipratipada. However, markets will remain open for special Muhurat trading session between 17:15 IST and 18:30 IST on 7 November 2018.

On the political front, the ruling Congress-JDS alliance has won 2 Lok Sabha seats and 2 Assembly seats in the Karnataka bypolls, which were held on Saturday. In a blow ahead of the 2019 general elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party managed to win only one parliamentary seat. The Congress has won Ballari parliamentary constituency and Jamkhandi assembly seat, while its ally JD(S) has taken Mandya and Shivamogga Lok Sabha seats. The Congress and JD(S) allied together to fight the BJP in the by-polls that would be a testing ground for the alliance before 2019 general elections. With today's victory, the Congress-JD(S) alliance's tally has increased to 120 seats in the 224 member assembly where the BJP has 104 MLAs.

In the foreign exchange market, the rupee edged higher against the dollar. The partially convertible rupee was hovering at 73.0175, compared with its close of 73.12 during the previous trading session.

In the global commodities markets, Brent for January 2018 settlement was down 33 cents at $72.84 a barrel. The contract had risen 34 cents, or 0.47% to settle at $73.17 a barrel during the previous trading session.

Overseas, European stocks were trading lower while Asian stocks ended mixed as investors looked to the US midterm elections set for later in the day. US stocks logged a mixed performance yesterday, 5 November 2018, ahead of an updated policy statement from the Federal Reserve and midterm elections that could alter the balance of power in Washington.

Midterm congressional elections, which are expected to see Democrats take control of the House and Republicans maintain a grip on the Senate, take place Tuesday. On Thursday, the Fed concludes a two-day policy meeting, which isn't expected to deliver a change in rates, but may offer fresh insights to investors about the pace of coming rate increases and the effects of trade clashes between the US and China on the domestic economy.

In US economic data, the ISM services index slipped to 60.3 in October, down from 61.6 in September.

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