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Benchmarks trade in range; Europe opens lower
03-Apr-20   13:32 Hrs IST

The market was trading in a narrow range with modest losses in afternoon trade. At 13:31 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was down 422.73 points or 1.50% at 27,842.58. The Nifty 50 index was down 102.35 points or 1.24% at 8,151.45.

In the broader market, the S&P BSE Mid-Cap index was down 0.39% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index was down 0.38%. The decline in both these indices was lesser than the Sensex.

The market breadth turned positive. On the BSE, 1077 shares rose and 950 shares fell. A total of 150 shares were unchanged. In Nifty 50 index, 19 stocks advanced while 31 stocks declined.

Economy:

IHS Markit announced Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) numbers for India yesterday, 2 April 2020. The headline seasonally adjusted IHS Markit India Manufacturing PMI fell from 54.5 in February 2020 to 51.8 in March 2020. Weighing on the headline figure was slowdown in production growth during March.

Commenting on the latest survey results, Eliot Kerr, Economist at IHS Markit, said: The Indian manufacturing sector remained relatively sheltered from the negative impact of the global coronavirus outbreak in March, however, there were pockets of disruption and a clear onset of fear amongst firms. New orders and output both grew at softer rates, but those readings were relatively tame compared to those seen at goods producers in Europe and other parts of Asia. The most prominent signs of trouble came from the new export orders and future activity indices, which respectively indicated tumbling global demand and softening domestic confidence. Should the trajectory of injections continue in the same vein, the Indian manufacturing sector can expect a much sharper negative impact in the coming months, similar to the scale seen in other countries.

Stocks in Spotlight:

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries (up 9.56%), ITC (up 6.76%), GAIL (India) (up 6.01%), ONGC (up 4.71%) and Mahindra & Mahindra (up 4.40%) were the top Nifty gainers.

IndusInd Bank (down 6.59%), Titan Company (down 5.63%), ICICI Bank (down 5.61%), JSW Steel (down 5.24%) and Kotak Mahindra Bank (down 5.05%) were the top Nifty losers.

Hero MotoCorp lost 3.72% to Rs 1578.25. The two-wheeler maker said its total two-wheeler sales stood at 334,647 units in March 2020, down 42.43% from 581,279 units in March 2019.

Cipla surged 8.11% to Rs 447.05. The drug maker announced the successful completion of Phase-3 clinical end-point study for fluticasone propionate and salmeterol inhalation powder (100/50 mcg).

ICICI Bank dropped 5.65% to Rs 293.85. The private lender has announced a reduction in its savings bank account interest rate and term deposits. ICICI Bank has announced a reduction in its savings bank account interest rate with effect from 9 April 2020. For savings account balance below Rs 50 lakh, the interest rate will be reduced to 3.25% per annum (pa) from 3.5% pa and for above Rs 50 lakh it will be reduced to 3.75% pa from 4% pa. ICICI Bank also announced reduction in rates of term deposits of value Rs 2 crore by upto 50 basis points across various tenures effective April 3, 2020.

Bajaj Auto slipped 1.16% to Rs 2028.20. The company reported 38% slide in total sales (commercial vehicles+two-wheelers) to 2.42 lakh units in March 2020 as against 3.93 lakh units in March 2019. Bajaj Auto registered a 35% fall in the two-wheeler sales to 2.10 lakh units in March 2020 over 3.23 lakh units in March 2019. Sale of commercial vehicles slumped 55% to 31,599 units in March 2020 as compared to 69,813 units in March 2019.

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone rose 1.16% to Rs 248.85 after the company said it recorded 7% cargo volume growth to 223 MMT in FY20 over FY19. Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone for the twelve-month period ended 31 March 2020 achieved a throughput of 223 MMT across its nine operating ports in India thus registering seven percent cargo volume growth on year on year basis, the company said in a statement on Thursday, 2 April 2020.

Global Markets:

European and Asian shares fell across the board on Friday. An overnight surge in oil prices, which saw US crude futures soaring more than 24% failed to cheer Asian markets.

On the economic data front, a private survey released Friday showed China's services sector shrank further in March. The Caixin/Markit services Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) for March was at 43 following a record low of 26.5 in February. PMI readings below 50 indicate contraction, while figures above that level signify an expansion.

US stocks on Thursday finished near the highs of the session, as investors appeared to focus on hope that a détente between some of the biggest oil producers on the planet might be achieved to substantially curb oil production and stabilize battered prices.

US President Donald Trump reportedly tweeted that he had been in contact with Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and that he expected the Saudis and Russia to cut production of 10 million to 15 million barrels a day.

Meanwhile, the US trade deficit narrowed to $39.9 billion in February from $45.5 billion in January.

The US Labour Department said Thursday that initial jobless claims surged to more than 6 million last week, reaching a new record as Coronavirus-related shutdowns roll through the country.

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