Mumbai: Indian equities ended firm for the first time in four days on Wednesday, erasing early losses, helped by rebound in US stock futures. Heavyweight stocks such as HDFC twins, Larsen & Toubro and Reliance Industries led the gains.
The Sensex ended up 180 points or 0.5 per cent at 35649.94 and the Nifty index ended up 66.35 points or 0.6 per cent at 10729.85. Indices had fallen more than 1 per cent earlier in the day to take stock of the developments in the global markets the previous day. Bharti Airtel, HDFC Bank, Housing Development Finance Corporation and Larsen & Toubro gained 1-4 per cent and were the top performers on the Sensex.
Foreign Portfolio Investors net bought Indian shares worth Rs 80.3 crore and Domestic Institutional Investors net sold local shares worth Rs 137.6 crore, provisional data showed.
Indian markets were shut on Tuesday on account of Christmas. Within Asia, the markets that were open on Christmas Day fell, with Japans Nikkei sliding 5 per cent after a session of steep losses on Wall Street overnight.
US stock indices had closed the Christmas eve session with losses of more than 2 per cent after US President Donald Trumps attack on the US central bank and a government shutdown in Washington. Trump had tweeted that the Federal Reserve Board was the US economys only problem. Recently, news reports had suggested that Trump had asked about the possibility of firing US Federal Reserve Chief Jerome Powell.
Market experts pointed out that global developments such as political uncertainty in the US and US-China trade tensions will take centre-stage in the next few days in the absence of domestic cues. “Indian markets will move in sync with the global markets. If there is a fall in the US markets, there will be a fall in markets across the globe,” said Piyush Garg, Chief Investment Officer at ICICI Securities. “Global slowdown is also being priced in by markets.”
Most Asian markets ended lower on Wednesday, except for Japan. The partial government shutdown looks set to extend into the New Year. That, and continued concern over slowing global economic growth is leading to investors staying cautious on the market. Despite the weakness in recent days, Indian markets are up in local currency terms compared to major Asian markets.