Domestic stock markets started Tuesday’s session on a mixed note, see-sawing between gains and losses ahead of release of key macroeconomic data. The 30-scrip benchmark index, Sensex, moved in a range of 36,465-36,331 in early trade, while the Nifty moved between 10,910 and 10,870. Weakness in IT stocks offset the advances in energy stocks. At 9:54 am, the Sensex traded 68 points lower at 36,326, and the Nifty was at 10,876, down 12 points from the previous close.
Top laggards on the 50-scrip index were Infosys, Bharti Infratel, TCS, Hero MotoCorp and HCL Tech, trading between 1.6 per cent and 2.7 per cent lower.
The government is due to release consumer inflation data for the month of January, and industrial production data for December post-market hours. The Reserve Bank of India tracks consumer inflation data primarily to formulate its monetary policy.
Consumer price inflation was expected at 2.48 per cent in January, after slowing in December to 2.19 per cent – its lowest rate since June 2017, according to a poll of 30 economists by news agency Reuters before last week’s RBI meeting.
The central bank in a surprise move reduced the repo rate – the key interest rate at which it lends short-term funds to commercial banks – by 0.25 per cent, and reduced its inflation projection to 2.8 per cent for the quarter ending March 31, 2019.
Shares in other Asian markets edged up, with MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rising 0.3 per cent.
Investors hoped a new round of US-China trade talks would help to resolve a dispute that’s dented global growth and some corporate earnings.
Improving market sentiment was news that US lawmakers reached a tentative deal on border security funding that would avert another partial government shutdown due to start on Saturday. The S&P 500 e-mini futures were up more than 0.5 per cent.
On Monday, the domestic stock markets had declined with the Sensex closing 151 points or 0.4 per cent lower and the Nifty index settling down 0.50 per cent.
Meanwhile, the rupee edged higher to 71.12 against the dollar in early trade on Tuesday.
Net sale of equities by foreign institutional investors (FIIs) and domestic institutional investors (DIIs) stood at Rs. 125.1 crore and Rs. 232.55 crore on Monday respectively, data from the NSE showed.