Fear of Covid second wave subdues equities, banking stocks fall

Fear of Covid second wave subdues equities, banking stocks fall

BSE Sensex above 50,000 on occasion celebration

Mumbai, March 22 (IANS) Fear of a second wave of Covid-19, elevated bond yields as well as weak global cues subdued India's key equity indices on Monday. The benchmark equity indices were volatile as FIIs pulled out Rs 786.98 crore. They ended on a flat-to-negative note. Globally, Asian markets were mixed after sentiments were shaken by the US Federal Reserve's announcement that it would end some emergency measures put in place last year to help the financial industry deal with the pandemic. Besides, a plunge in the Turkish lira also spooked investors. Furthermore, European stocks were weighed down by a slump in Turkey's currency and worries about more restrictions due to rising coronavirus cases in the continent. Among sectors, realty, IT, FMCG, and pharma gained the most, while bank, and media fell the most. The 30-scrip S&P BSE Sensitive Index (Sensex) closed at 49,771.29, down by 86.95 points, or 0.17 per cent, from its previous close. Likewise, the broader 50-scrip Nifty at the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed in the red too, at 14,736.40, down by 7.60 points, or 0.05 per cent from its previous close. "Nifty has closed almost at the intraday high. A sustained breach of 14,764 on the upside could result in some more upside momentum of about 100 Nifty points," said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research at HDFC Securities. "Positive advance decline ratio is also encouraging." Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services, said: "Fear of the second wave of Covid-19, elevated bond yield and weak global cues is weighing on the domestic market. The expectation of rise in inflation is also impacting the market." "The market has marched well in anticipation of faster economic recovery and is taking a breather given tightening restrictions and an increase in future interest rate, spiking fear of a slower recovery." S. Ranganathan, Head of Research at LKP Securities said: "Markets opened weak on fears of the recent spike in coronavirus infections in a few states." "Afternoon trade however witnessed a recovery led by cement stocks with support from technology stocks."

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