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Sensex, Nifty end flat ahead of Fed decision; PCJ slumps 23%

The overall breadth of the market remained negative as 1,778 stocks closed lower and 920 rose.

Updated: May 02, 2018, 05.07 PM IST
Sensex, Nifty end flat in cautious trade; Fed outcome eyed
Sensex, Nifty end flat in cautious trade; Fed outcome eyed
NEW DELHI: Weak Asian cues and uninspiring March quarter earnings from some bluechip courtiers weighed on domestic equity benchmarks on Wednesday.

Both the key indices Nifty and Sensex closed on a flat note, with gains in Kotak Mahindra Bank, HDFC Bank and ITC offset by losses in ICICI Bank, Hindustan Unilever and State Bank of India.

Asian cues remained subdued as investors restricted their bets ahead of the US Fed policy meet outcome, expected tonight. In March, the Fed had signalled steeper rate hikes amid steady economic growth.

The 50-share Nifty pack closed 21 points, or 0.20 per cent, down at 10,718, while the BSE Sensex clocked nominal gains of 16 points, or 0.05 per cent, ending at 35,176.

The overall breadth of the market remained negative as 1,778 stocks closed the day declining, while 920 advancing on the BSE.

“Market ended flat on Wednesday after a choppy session dragged by losses in the metal and IT indices. HCL Technologies dipped 4.9 per cent after the IT company posted a 9.9 per cent fall in its fourth quarter net profit, hurt by higher expenses. On the global front sentiment remained muted as investors await the US Federal Reserve’s policy decision later today,” said Hemang Jani, Head - Advisory, Sharekhan by BNP Paribas.

In the Sensex pack, 10 stocks closed the day in the green, while 21 in the red.

The pack of Sensex gainers was led by Kotak Mahindra Bank. The stocks hit its fresh 52-week high of 1287.75 on Wednesday. The bank on Monday reported a 15.16 per cent yearly rise in standalone net profit at Rs 1,124 crore for the March quarter.

On the other hand, HCL Technologies stood among the top losers of the day after the company reported a decline in its consolidated net profit for the March quarter. HCL Technologies on Wednesday reported a 4.3 per cent YoY drop in consolidated net profit at Rs 2,227 crore for March quarter. The scrip fell over 5 per cent intraday, eventually closing at 1,001.05, down 4.79 per cent.

Metal stocks dragged most on Wednesday. The BSE Metal index fell over 3 per cent on Wednesday with Hindustan Zinc cracking up to 6 per cent. The company on Monday reported a 18 per cent fall in March quarter net profit.

Realty, consumer durables, auto, pharma and technology stocks also remained among the big losers of the day.

European stocks were trading up, buoyed by decent earnings. However, major Asian markets closed the day in the red.

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