Nifty ends above 8,900 for the first time since Sept 8; Axis rallies 5%

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Benchmark indices settled the day higher led by rally in index heavyweights like Axis Bank and Asian Paints. Consumer Durables, oil & gas, banking and finance stocks contributed to the gains.

Sensex rallied as much as 140 points while the broader Nifty50 index reclaimed its 8,900 levels for the first time since September 8, 2016.

The S&P BSE Sensex settled the day at 28,761, up 100 points, while the broader Nifty50 ended at 8,908, up 29 points.

In the broader markets, the BSE Midcap and the BSE Smallcap indices outperformed the frontline indices to rise 0.5% and 0.4%, respectively while Nifty Midcap and Smallcap indices closed at fresh highs.

“The market is moving on stock specific action & has put aside tomorrow’s FED minutes which is largely expected to give more cues on March rate hike. Bank nifty outperformed the boarder market while consumer discretionary has got some traction in expectation of normalcy of business after the demonetization led disruption,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services in a note.

Sector and Stocks

Axis Bank rallied over 5% as reports of merger gathered steam. The bank yesterday issued a classification on BSE saying, “news on possible merger between Axis Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank is baseless and unsubstantiated.”

Bharti Airtel and TCS were top losers on BSE Sensex, down 3.8% and 1.7% respectively, followed by ITC, Maruti and PowerGrid while Axis Bak, Asian Paints and RIL were the top gainers.

Extending gains for the fifth straight session, JSPL was gained 9.3% in addition to 7.7% rally in previous session.

Bharti Airtel fell 4.1% while Idea Cellular was down 0.3% after Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani launched the Rs 303 per month plan for Reliance Jio.
According to the tariff plan, Jio will match the highest selling tariff of other operators and provide 20% more data than what other operators provide.

Global Markets

European equities slipped in early trading on Tuesday, with HSBC leading the regional banking index lower after reporting a 62% slump in its annual pre-tax profit.

HSBC was the biggest decliner in the European banking index , which fell 2% and put pressure on the broader stock market. The pan-European STOXX 600 index was quoted 0.2% lower by 0828 GMT.

Britain’s FTSE 100 bore the brunt of London-listed HSBC’s troubles, falling 0.4%. That was double the decline on France’s CAC 40, while Germany’s DAX was up 0.1%.

MSCI’s world stock index slipped 0.1% and MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was also down 0.1%, consolidating below a 19-month peak hit last Thursday.

China’s blue-chip index rose to its highest in over two months on Tuesday, extending gains from Monday – its best day in six months – on reports that pension funds will begin pumping funds into the country’s stock markets.

With U.S. markets closed for the Presidents Day holiday on Monday, Asian markets had few global cues off which to trade. US futures point to a rise of around 0.1% at the open on Wall Street.