After witnessing a highly volatile session of trade, the domestic equity market benchmarks on the BSE and National Stock Exchange (NSE) ended with nearly 1 per cent gains on Wednesday ahead of the outcome of US presidential elections, aided by gains in pharmaceutical and information technology (IT) counters.
After gyrating over 600 points during the day, the S&P BSE Sensex ended at 40,616.14, thereby registering a gain of 355.01 points (0.88 per cent). Likewise, the Nifty 50 too rose 95 points (0.80 per cent) to settle at 11,908.50. The NSE benchmark swung over 170 points in intraday trade.
On the 30-share BSE benchmark, gains were led by IndusInd Bank, Sun Pharmaceutical Industries, Reliance Industries (RIL), Infosys (Infy), Kotak Mahindra Bank and Tech Mahindra. On the other hand, Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC), Power Grid, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, NTPC and Larsen & Toubro (L&T) were the top losers of the day.
The volatility index or India VIX on the NSE fell 4.29 per cent to end at 23.2000. Among the sectoral indices, the Nifty Pharma index rose 2.18 per cent on Wednesday aided by Sun Pharma, Divi’s Laboratories and Cipla. The Nifty IT too rose 1.78 per cent led by Larsen & Toubro Infotech and Infy.
In the broader market, the S&P BSE MidCap index rose 65.17 points (0.43 per cent) to end at 15,086.18, while the S&P BSE SmallCap settled at 14,883.19, up 48.92 points (0.33 per cent).
“A close contest in the US election spiked volatility in the global market after yesterday’s strong rally. However, Indian market was not so volatile as the outcome is not expected to change the country’s strategic outlook. Benchmark indices were supported by IT & Pharma sectoral rally due to strengthening of USD. Expectation of another set of domestic stimulus also helped to raise investor’s confidence. Political developments in the US along with likely measures to be announced by the Fed from the ongoing meetings will drive the market,” Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services, said in a statement post market hours.
The rupee depreciated 35 paise to close at 74.76 (provisional) against the US dollar on Wednesday, tracking strong American currency ahead of the US Presidential election results.
At the interbank forex market, the local unit opened at 74.74 against the greenback and finally settled at 74.76, down 35 paise over its last close. During the session, the local unit witnessed an intra-day high of 74.57 and a low of 74.90 against the dollar. On Tuesday, the rupee had settled at 74.41 against the US currency.
Share markets were whipsawed, while bonds and the dollar gained on Wednesday as results from the US presidential election proved far closer than polls had predicted, potentially leaving the outcome in doubt for days or weeks.
Investors initially wagered that a possible Democratic sweep by Biden could ease political risk and provide a huge boost to fiscal stimulus. But the mood quickly changed as Trump snatched Florida and ran much closer in other battleground states than polls predicted.
US equity futures went on a wild ride, rising then falling, climbing again as the voting seemed to favour Trump only to sag once more as the president vowed to make a Supreme Court challenge.
The prospect of a drawn out and bitter fight ahead meant Europe’s main bourses in London, Paris and Frankfurt fell a modest 0.1-0.8 per cent as they opened as investors factored in the uncertainty ahead.
The technology sector saw reason for gains, with NASDAQ futures rising 2.4 per cent. E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 dropped 1 per cent after Trump signalled his intention to go to the Supreme Court but clawed higher again in early European dealing.
Japan’s Nikkei was ahead by 1.7 per cent, while MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan edged up 0.2 per cent.
Chinese blue chips rose 0.7 per cent, with markets uncertain how Sino-US relations would develop from here.
— global market input from Reuters, rupee input from PTI
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