Domestic stock markets concluded a choppy session on Wednesday on a mixed note, with the BSE Sensex registering a third record closing high in a row. National Stock Exchange (NSE) benchmark index Nifty, however, closed on a flat note. BSE benchmark index Sensex closed 33 points higher at 36,858 – a fresh record closing high – while the 50-scrip index settled at 11,132, 2 points lower than the previous close. Mild gains in PSU banking/financials and metal stocks supported the indices, but with very limited upside as pharma, IT, auto and realty stocks declined. Besides, gains in other Asian markets also provided some support to domestic equity markets.
The Sensex and Nifty hit life-time highs of 36,947 and 11,157 during the session, respectively. Top Nifty gainers were SBI, Indiabulls Housing Finance, Bajaj Finserv, UPL, closing between gains of 1.5 per cent and 3.8 per cent.
The Nifty PSU Bank and Nifty Financial Service indices, the NSE’s sectoral indices for state-run banking and financial services stocks respectively – finished 1.4 per cent and 0.6 per cent higher.
HDFC rose 1.2 per cent after the company said it would consider raising of external commercial borrowings up to $1.5 billion.
Among other gainers was ICICI Prudential Life Insurance, which rose 4.7 per cent after brokerages forecast the insurer’s margins would expand in the following quarters.
Adani Ports closed 1.5 per cent higher, a day after conglomerate Adani Group said its coal mining volumes are expected to touch 80 million tonnes by the end of March 2021.
“Because of a low base last year due to factors like GST, we are expecting good results this quarter and the next, and the market will continue its upward movement,” news agency Reuters cited Rusmik Oza, senior vice-president (head of fundamental research) at Kotak Securities, as saying.
On the other hand, top laggards on the Nifty 50 were Lupin, HCL Tech, UltraTech Cement and Axis Bank, declining between 2.6 per cent and 4 per cent.
Auto stocks declined, with the Nifty Auto settling 0.5 per cent lower. Maruti Suzuki India is due to report its earnings for the April-June period on Thursday. The stock ended 0.65 per cent lower on the NSE.