Markets mark biggest gain in 4 mths;Re wipes off losses

Last Updated 12 March 2019, 11:37 IST

The Indian markets marked its biggest gain in past four months, while Indian rupee has tried to wipe off all its losses in 2019 against the US dollar, after a week of rallying on the back of continuous foreign fund inflows.

The 30-share BSE Sensex closed 37,535.66, marking a gain of 482 points -- its highest in past four months. The last time BSE marked gains higher than this was on December 12, 2018, when it had gained 629.06 points.

On the other hand, broader index 50-share Nifty closed at 11,301.20, up 133.15 points (1.19%).

The overall market breadth was heavily positive with NSE witnessing 1,082 gains, as against 661 declines. On the other hand, BSE witnessed 1,653 advances, against 1,067 declines.

On Sensex, Bharti Airtel was the highest gainer with advances of 5.12%, followed by IndusInd Bank (3.69%) and ICICI Bank (3.27%).

Sources in the markets suggest that the markets are factoring the fact that Prime Minister Narendra Modi might return to power in the general election. "It is like creating a perception that he is returning to power -- whether or not he will is a secondary question. So, for now, we might see a rally," a senior analyst with one of the brokerage houses said, wishing not to be named.

On the other hand, the rupee closed at 69.70, marking gains worth 18 paise during the day's trade.

At the Interbank Foreign Exchange, the rupee opened at 69.73 against the US dollar and advanced to 69.64, showing a rise of 25 paise over the previous close.

During the day's trade, the rupee gained further and was trading 37 paise up at three months high of 69.51.

The rupee so far in the day traded in the range of 69.51-69.76 against the US dollar.

The last time rupee was trading higher than this was on January 1, 2019, when it closed at 69.44 against the greenback.

In line with equities, the forex market sentiment has also been boosted by sustained fund inflows by foreign institutional investors (FIIs) in the last few sessions.

FIIs bought equities worth Rs 3,810.60 crore on Monday. In the month of March till Monday, the foreign funds have invested in Indian debt and equities markets a net of Rs 8,124.59 crore.

The gain in the rupee is also aided by the increased selling of the US dollar by the exporters, who are trying to close their financial account before the end of the fiscal year 2018-19.

The gains of the rupee are expected to make travel and the living costs of the Indian students in the US cheaper along with a reduction in tourist expenses.

The gain is also expected to have an impact on the value of imported goods, which includes a gamut of electronic goods such as mobile phones. "This will significantly lower the import cost. So the imported goods are expected to be cheaper now," said Kavita Chacko, Senior Economist, Care Ratings.

(Published 12 March 2019, 04:25 IST)

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