Sensex, Nifty start on choppy note on profit booking, weak global cues

PowerGrid was the top loser in the Sensex pack, shedding over 1%, followed by Bajaj Auto, Maruti, Dr Reddy’s, Asian Paints and Titan

Equity benchmarks Sensex and Nifty opened on a choppy note on August 16 tracking profit booking at higher levels and a weak trend in global markets.

After dropping over 100 points in the opening session, the 30-share index turned flat. It was trading 20.92 points or 0.04% lower at 55,416.37, while the broader NSE Nifty slipped 11.50 points or 0.07% to 16,517.60.

PowerGrid was the top loser in the Sensex pack, shedding over 1%, followed by Bajaj Auto, Maruti, Dr Reddy’s, Asian Paints and Titan.

On the other hand, M&M, Tata Steel, TCS and Tech Mahindra were among the gainers.

In the previous session, Sensex jumped 593.31 points or 1.08% to its new all-time high of 55,437.29, and Nifty breached the 16,500 level, advancing 164.70 points or 1.01% to its fresh closing peak of 16,529.10.

Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) were net buyers in the capital market as they purchased shares worth ₹819.77 crore on Friday, as per provisional exchange data.

Benchmark indices opened on a choppy note amid profit-booking at fresh peaks, said experts.

According to Binod Modi Head-Strategy at Reliance Securities, while benchmark Nifty and Sensex witnessed strong rebound last week, it was not a broad-based rally considering heavy selling pressure in midcap and smallcap stocks.

June quarter earnings were impressive, and a number of companies succeeded to beat consensus estimates, which offered comfort to the market, he noted.

The sharp improvement in key economic indicators like GST collection and auto sales volume indicate sustainable rebound in corporate earnings in subsequent quarters. This should aid the market to sustain premium valuations, he added.

While concerns over global growth due to the recent rise in delta variants of coronavirus cases in different parts of the world continues to persist, he believes that the underlying strength of the domestic market remains intact.

Elsewhere in Asia, bourses in Hong Kong, Tokyo and Seoul were trading with losses in mid-session deals, while Shanghai was positive.

Meanwhile, international oil benchmark Brent crude fell 1.06% to USD 69.84 per barrel.

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