Sensex, Nifty close down for third straight session amid lower wholesale inflation

BSE Sensex closed lower on Monday. Photo: AFP

Mumbai: Markets brought about their third session of fall on Monday, buffeted by ongoing geo-political headwinds, as the Sensex fell marginally to a three-week low of 29,414 even as wholesale inflation moderated.

The Korean peninsula, Afghanistan and Syria remained geo-political flashpoints, which cast their shadow here. After reaching the day’s low of 29,363.28, the Sensex recovered partially before settling down 47.79 points, or 0.16%, at 29,413.66—its lowest closing since 27 March. The gauge has now lost 374.69 points in three sessions.

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The NSE Nifty also remained under pressure and was down 11.50 points, or 0.13%, to close at 9,139.30. However, there was relief on the prices front as WPI inflation slipped to 5.70% in March, from 6.55% in February.

“Rising geo-political tension and a tepid start to domestic earnings season dragged the indices to consolidation. Investors are waiting for more cues from upcoming quarterly results,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services.

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Broader markets outperformed the key indices. Japanese financial services major Nomura in its report said India’s current account deficit (CAD) may widen to 1.6% of GDP this year, which added to nervousness, traders said.

NTPC lost most (3.31%), Sun Pharma (2.18%), Asian Paints (1.81%) and Coal India (1.77%). However, GAIL rose 4.01% followed by RIL 1.95%, PowerGrid 1.30% and Dr Reddy’s 0.72%, which put brakes on the slide.

Indiabulls Real Estate recorded a spectacular rally of some 40%, driven by reports of restructuring of business. Other gainers in this segment included HDIL, DLF, Godrej Properties and Unitech. Other Asian markets moved cautiously even as Chinese economic growth data beat expectations, with geo-political muscle-flexing weighing heavy.

China’s economy grew 6.9% in the first quarter of 2017, government data showed. The market was shut on Friday for Ambedkar Jayanti and Good Friday. BSE metal dropped by 1.09%, followed by power, technology and PSU, while realty jumped 8.82%.