Snapping previous week’s gains, the benchmark indices on Monday opened lower after Asian markets slipped on worries UK Prime Minister Theresa May may signal plans for a “hard Brexit” in her speech on Tuesday. Back home, the goods and services tax (GST) Council meeting and Wholesale Price index-based inflation due later in the day also kept investors’ nerves frayed.
At 09:51 am, the S&P BSE Sensex was trading at 27,213, down 25 points, while the broader Nifty50 was ruling at 8,386, down 14 points.
In the broader market, the BSE Midcap and BSE Smallcap indices registered an uptick of 0.07%, and 0.2%, respectively.
“Going ahead, considering recent sharp rally, we may see Nifty consolidating around 8,460 and then at 8,598, which can termed as immediate hurdles. In case of a dip, 8,320-8,250 would be seen as strong support levels for the index,” said Angel Broking in a technical note.
Sectors and stocks
BSE IT index was the top sectoral loser, led by losses in Ramco Systems (down 2.5%), R S SOFTWARE (down 1.9%), Infosys (down 1.7%) and Lycos Internet (down 1.5%)
Shares of Coal India slipped 1% even as its arm Central Coalfields announced an increase in price of coking coal, which may help the PSU earn an additional revenue of nearly Rs 89.98 crore for the remainder of 2016-17 and Rs 222 crore for the next fiscal year.
Oil marketing companies such as Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), Bharat Petroleum Corporation (BPCL) and Hindustan Petroleum Corporation (HPCL) rallied after they hiked petrol prices by 42 paise a litre on Sunday, the fourth increase in 6 weeks, and diesel rate by Rs 1.03 a litre, the second hike in a fortnight.
IOC gained 2% to Rs 358, BPCL added 0.9% to Rs 663, while HPCL advanced 1.1% to Rs 493 on the BSE.
GST Council meeting
A fortnight ahead of Budget 2017, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will try to bridge difference with the state governments on GST in a two-day meeting which begins later in the day.
The all-powerful GST Council, headed by Jaitley, will meet for the ninth time today. The last four meetings ended in a deadlock with states seeking sole powers to control assessee with annual turnover of up to Rs 1.5 crore.
Brexit fears loom large
Prime Minister Theresa May will call on Britons to reject the acrimony of the Brexit referendum in a speech this week that some newspapers have billed as setting the stage for a “hard” exit from the European Union.
Investors will scrutinise May’s speech on Tuesday for clues on whether she plans to prioritise immigration controls and bilateral trade deals in a “hard Brexit” that would see Britain leave the EU’s single market and customs union.
Oil prices to stay volatile
Global oil prices will witness “much more volatility” in 2017 even though markets may rebalance in the first half of the year if output cuts pledged by producers are implemented, the head of the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Sunday.
Asian share markets were hesitant with MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan up just 0.09%. Japan’s Nikkei and Taiwan’s TSEC eased 0.9% each, while China’s Shanghai Composite and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng indices shed over 1% each.
On Friday, The Dow Jones Industrial Average index slipped 5.27 points to settle at 19,885 on Friday. The S&P500 index edged higher by 4.20 points to 2,274. The Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 26.63 points to 5,574. US markets will remain closed today on account of Martin Luther King Jr day.