Sensex flat with positive bias; Nifty trades at 9136

Posted March 21, 2017

The benchmark BSE Sensex recovered by nearly 57 points in early trade today on the back of gains in FMCG, capital goods, PSU, power, auto and IT sector stocks amid positive Asian cues. The benchmarks gave away early gains and slipped into the red.

Anand James, Chief Market Strategist, Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services said: "IT stocks continued to bleed, with a firm rupee adding to H1-B visa woes". SAIL, Vedanta, Hindustan Zinc and National Aluminium were down 1-2% each. Drug makers slumped on worries of regulatory action from the US Food and Drug Administration. Sun Pharma was down 2.7% and Lupin 0.5%. It was followed by Nifty PSU Bank index (down 1.23 per cent), Nifty Private Bank (down 0.50 per cent) and Nifty Metal index (down 0.74 per cent).

Idea Cellular fell almost 5 percent, a day after its board approved the merger of Vodafone India and its wholly-owned subsidiary Vodafone Mobile Services with itself.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.4 per, cent to 15-month highs, with tech-heavy Seoul and Taipei shares hitting two-year highs while Hong Kong's Hang Seng scaled 1 1/2-year highs.

On Monday, Wall Street ended down as doubts increased over US President Donald Trump's ability to quickly roll out an expansionary fiscal policy through tax cuts and higher government spending to spur economic growth. On the other hand, realty index was up 0.88 per cent, FMCG 0.57 per cent and IT 0.13 per cent. "Risk appetite was also on a lower note, as markets entered an event vacuum, and investors looking for bargain, rather than chasing price higher, with stocks already at heady highs". Brent crude futures were at $51.62 a barrel while USA crude futures WTI traded below $50 per barrel.