Samvat 2073: Sensex up 16.6%; investors richer by Rs 25 L cr

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Mumbai, Oct 18 (PTI): Stock markets ended on a flat note on Wednesday, just below their record highs, but finished Samvat 2073 with robust gains of over 16 per cent, adding over Rs 25 lakh crore to investors’ wealth.

The benchmark Sensex has gained 4,642.84 points, or 16.61 per cent, in the Hindu Samvat year 2073, while the broader NSE Nifty surged 1,572.85 points, or 18.20 per cent during this period. In Wednesday’s session, the 50-share Nifty fell by 23.60 points or 0.23 per cent to close at 10,210.85 after moving between 10,175.75 and 10,236.45. The Sensex resumed lower at 32,518.56 and fell further to a low of 32,462.85 before ending at 32,584.35, down 24.81 points or 0.08 per cent. Investors adopted a cautious approach ahead of the long Diwali weekend, while a weak rupee too affected sentiment, brokers said.

The BSE and NSE will conduct a special Muhurat trading session tomorrow between 1830 hrs and 1930 hrs on the occasion of Diwali. The bourses will remain closed on Friday for ‘Diwali Balipratipada’. “NPA divergences have continued to be a strong theme in banks’ results, putting the banking stocks under pressure, but market remains expectant of more GST related positivity in the coming days,” said Anand James, Chief Market Strategist, Geojit Financial Services.

Axis Bank emerged as the worst performer among Sensex components, tumbling 9.52 per cent following a spike in bad loans in the September quarter. The private sector lender yesterday reported a nearly 36 per cent increase in net profit at Rs 432 crore in the second quarter ended September, but reported a rise in bad loans. Other laggards included ICICI Bank, Cipla, SBI, Lupin, Sun Pharma, Asian Paints, Hindustan Unilever, Bajaj Auto, Hero MotoCorp, Maruti Suzuki, Infosys, Bharti Airtel, L&T and Tata Steel, falling by up to 3.96 per cent.

Reliance Industries topped the gainers list by surging 4.52 per cent, while Wipro rose 1.92 per cent after the company yesterday reported a 5.8 per cent rise in net profit for three months to September. Among the sectoral indices, telecom fell 1.86 per cent, followed by bankex 1.79 per cent, healthcare 0.80 per cent, teck 0.67 per cent, consumer durables 0.57 per cent, metal 0.51 per cent, auto 0.41 per cent and IT 0.35 per cent. The broader markets depicted a mixed trend, with the small-cap index falling 0.02 per cent, while the mid-cap rose 0.01 per cent.

Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) sold shares worth a net Rs 484.92 crore yesterday, as per provisional data released by the stock exchanges. Domestic institutional investors (DIIs) bought shares worth a net Rs 809.03 crore. Overseas, European shares edged higher as investors monitored the latest batch of earnings and economic data releases. Most Asian stocks edged lower as investors in the region looked to China’s Communist Party Congress for signs on future policy direction of the world’s second-largest economy.

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