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Benchmarks trade with modest losses

·4-min read

The equity benchmark indices traded in a narrow range with modest losses in mid-morning trade. Pharma and IT stocks advanced while banks and financial shares were under pressure. Mixed global cues and soaring new Covid-19 cases in the country weighed on the sentiment.

At 11:26 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was down 398.08 points or 0.8% at 49,367.75. The Nifty 50 index slipped 102 points or 0.68% at 14,792.95.

In broader market, the S&P BSE Mid-Cap index was up 0.16% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index gained 0.5%.

The market breadth was positive. On the BSE, 1493 shares rose and 1137 shares fell. A total of 139 shares were unchanged.

Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares worth Rs 809.37 crore, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs), were net sellers to the tune of Rs 942.35 crore in the Indian equity market on 29 April, provisional data showed

COVID-19 Update:

Total COVID-19 confirmed cases worldwide stood at 150,124,248 with 3,161,971 deaths.

India reported 31,70,228 active cases of COVID-19 infection and 208,330 deaths, according to the data from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.

India for the ninth day in a row recorded fresh Covid infections over 3 lakh with the caseload inching closer to the 4 lakh mark as India reported 3,86,693 fresh cases in the last 24 hours.

Meanwhile, reports suggest that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will chair a meeting of the Union Council of Ministers on Friday to discuss the prevailing Covid situation in the country. The meeting, to be held virtually on Friday morning, could also be attended by some top government officials besides Union ministers, according to the report.

Buzzing Index:

The Nifty Financial Services index slipped 1.45% to 15,814.15, snapping its four day rising streak. The index rallied 3.78% in the past four days.

HDFC Bank (down 3.25%), HDFC (down 2.5%), ICICI Bank (down 1.2%), Bajaj Finance (down 1.12%), ICICI Lombard General Insurance (down 0.78%), Bajaj Finserv (down 0.73%) and Kotak Mahindra Bank (down 0.66%) were top losers in financial index.

Earnings Impact:

AU Small Finance Bank slipped 9%. The small finance bank reported a 38% jump in net profit to Rs 169 crore in Q4 FY21 from Rs 122 crore in Q4 FY20. Total income was at Rs 1569.01 crore in Q4 FY21, up by 14.8% from Rs 1366.60 crore in Q4 FY20. Net interest income (NII) increased by 18% year-on-year (YoY) to Rs 656 crore during the quarter. The bank said that in Q4 FY21, NII was impacted due to interest reversals of Rs 66 crore on account of NPA tagging of borrower accounts in compliance with RBI circular of 7th April. The bank had made Rs 38 crore of provisions against these reversals which were utilized during the quarter. The NII growth was, however, aided by a reduction in cost of funds by 86 bps. Operating profit before provisions and contingencies was at Rs 374 crore in the fourth quarter, which is higher by 18% as compared to Rs 316 crore reported in the same period last year.

Tata Coffee rallied 3.79% after the company's consolidated net profit soared 138.5% to Rs 57.37 crore on 14.4% jump in net sales to Rs 591.23 crore in Q4 FY21 over Q4 FY20. Consolidated total income for the quarter stood higher at Rs 612 crore as compared to Rs 523 crore for the corresponding quarter of the previous year, registering an increase of 17% Y-o-Y (year-on-year), driven by improved performance from the plantations business partly offset by the group's value- added businesses, which had a marginal decline due to the pandemic induced logistics issues as well as muted demand in specific geographies.

Global Markets:

Asian stocks were trading lower on Friday as investors weighed the latest corporate earnings and solid economic growth data.

Data showed China's factory activity expanded at a slower-than-expected pace in April as the official manufacturing Purchasing Manager's Index fell to 51.1, from 51.9 in March. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.

In US, the S&P 500 closed at record levels on Thursday after blowout earnings results from two of the biggest tech companies in the world: Apple and Facebook.

Apple said that sales jumped 54% during the quarter, with each product category seeing double-digit growth. The company also said it would increase its dividend by 7%, and authorized $90 billion in share buybacks. Facebook's revenue jumped 48%, driven by higher-priced ads.

Economic data released Thursday gave investors an update on the progress of the economic recovery. First-quarter GDP hit an annualized rate of 6.4%.