Benchmark indices ended on a bearish note for the second consecutive session on Thursday, the October derivatives expiry day, amid weak global equities. Sensex ended 172 points lower at 39,749 and Nifty fell 58 points to 11,670. Yesterday, Sensex ended 599 points lower at 39,922 and Nifty lost 159 points to 11,729.
Titan, followed by L&T, ONGC, Tech Mahindra, Bajaj Auto, HUL and Nestle India were among the top laggards on Sensex. On the other hand, Axis Bank, Asian Paints, UltraTech Cement and HCL Tech were among the gainers.
Sectorally except IT, all other indices closed in the red with Nifty media ending 1.85% lower, followed by almost 1% decline in auto and FMCG index.
Asian stocks were trading mostly lower on Thursday following an overnight plunge in the US. Key indices on Wall Street closed 3% lower, falling to its lowest closing level in nearly three months as coronavirus cases continue to surge in the West.
With a presidential election less than a week away, dwindling hopes for any US economic relief package also kept sentiments negative.
European markets also ended 3% lower amid growing concern over the latest increase in coronavirus infections and its potential impact on the global economy. French and German leaders announced new lockdown measures to combat rising infections.
On markets closing --Manish Hathiramani, proprietary index trader and technical analyst, Deen Dayal Investments said, "The markets have kept above the 11650 levels upon closing. We need to see if we break that tomorrow. Should that happen, we would be commencing the November series on a negative note as the Nifty can then go down to 11400-11450 levels. On the upside, we have a stiff resistance at 11900-11950."
Meanwhile, September quarterly earnings announcements by Maruti Suzuki, BPCL, InterGlobe Aviation, Havells India, IDBI Bank, Vodafone Idea, TVS Motor and Bank of Baroda will set the tone for stock market tomorrow.
S Ranganathan, Head of Research at LKP Securities said,"As we approach the Presidential Elections in the US, markets today anxiously awaits earnings of the BIG-4 in the US. While the NIFTY arrested its fall today with select stocks in Cement & Banking pulling their weight, the broader markets saw buying across select names in Pharma & Sugar".
Ajit Mishra, VP - Research, Religare Broking said," We reiterate cautious stance as there is high uncertainty in global markets due to recent surge in COVID cases. A decline below 11,600 in Nifty would pave way for further slide. In case of a rebound, 11,750 would act as a hurdle. Traders should limit their leveraged positions and maintain a balanced approach."
In India, coronavirus cases neared 80-lakh mark with total deaths standing at 1.20 lakh. Worldwide, there were 447 lakh confirmed cases and 11.79 lakh deaths from COVID-19 outbreak.
Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services said," The weakness can stay for the short-term, a reversal can happen as strong fiscal and monetary stimulus is expected from governments and central banks in the world to overcome the crisis."
"Overall, we are witnessing consolidation in the markets, with Nifty meeting with resistance around 11850-11900 zone whereas support is seen around 11450-11500 levels. India VIX has gained 10% so far this week, which could become a cause of concern if this trend continues as increased volatility is likely to be witnessed ahead of US Presidential Election," said Aamar Deo Singh-Head Advisory, Angel Broking.
On the currency front, the rupee fell for the second straight session and ended another 23 paise lower at 74.10 per US dollar, tracking weak domestic equities and strong American currency.
Nish Bhatt, Founder & CEO, Millwood Kane International -said:"The slide for the Indian rupee continues, as it slips below the 74/$ level, INR is now trading at a 2-month low. We are just a week away from the US Presidential election and the lack of clarity on the new stimulus package has created market uncertainty. Reports emerging that the Indian government is finalizing the next stimulus package to boost sentiment and bring growth back on track. Going forward a clear outcome from the US election, clarity on stimulus package from the US, and the Indian government will guide the INR."
Sugandha Sachdeva VP-Metals, Energy & Currency Research, Religare Broking said," Jitters on the street ahead of the US elections and dimming hopes of a stimulus plan from the US administration in the near term have led to the recent rise in Dollar Index from a multi-week low. Adding to that, uncertainty due to the second wave of COVID-19 cases hitting the US and Europe has also dented investor sentiments, leading to sell-off in global as well as domestic equities. All of these factors have played their part in pushing the rupee lower after a long period of consolidation around the 73-72.80 zone, wherein it witnessed a depreciation of around 0.60% in today's trade."