Rupee slump, high oil prices halt 6-week march of equity indices (Market Review)

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Mumbai : The Indian equity market snapped its six-week-long gaining streak during the September 3-7 period as the rupee fell to record low levels, coupled with high crude oil prices and decline in the global markets.

However, gains in the indices by the end of the week helped curb losses. Three out of the five sessions were negative during the period.

The rupee breached 72 a US dollar-mark for the first time. However, towards the week-end it recovered marginally following intervention by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), analysts said.

Investor sentiments in the global markets were subdued due to high crude oil prices and persistent US-China trade tensions.

On a weekly basis, the S&P BSE Sensex closed at 38,389.82 points, lower 255.25 points or 0.66 per cent from its previous close.

Similarly, the wider Nifty50 on the National Stock Exchange on Friday ended at 11,589.10 points, down 91.4 points or 0.78 per cent from the previous week's close.

Heavy selling pressure was witnessed from Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) both in cash and futures segments, said Rahul Sharma, Senior Research Analyst at Equity99.

However, towards the fag-end of the week, market recovered from early losses. Domestic indices rose for the second consecutive session on Friday on gains in auto, metal and technology stocks, according to Prateek Jain, Director, Hem Securities.

Value buying and recovery in the rupee from its lows in the later part of the week helped the indices rise on Thursday and Friday, thereby partially paring weekly losses.

Auto stocks gained after Union Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday announced that the government would do away with permits for commercial vehicles run on alternative fuels.

On the currency front, the rupee touched a record low of 72.11 per US dollar on Thursday, though it recovered to end the week at 71.73 per dollar -- 73 paise weaker from the previous week's close of 71 per dollar.

The rupee remained subdued for most of the week due to a rise in crude oil prices and a similar weak trend among its global peers.

In terms of investments, provisional figures from the stock exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors sold scrips worth Rs 789.60 crore and the domestic institutional investors bought stocks worth Rs 1,167.85 crore in the past week.

Figures from the National Securities Depository Ltd (NSDL) showed that foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) divested Rs 504.03 crore, or $70.06 million in the equities segment during September 3-7.

Sector-wise, the top gainers during the week were pharma, IT, metal and energy indices and the major losers were public sectors, FMCG and media indices, said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research at HDFC securities.

The top weekly Sensex gainers were Wipro (up 7.43 per cent at Rs 324.05), Bajaj Auto (up 6.47 per cent at Rs 2,924), Tata Motors (DVR) (up 4.11 per cent at Rs 148.05), Tata Motors (up 3.89 per cent at Rs 277.50) and Reliance Industries (up 2.88 per cent at Rs 1,276.75 per share).

The major losers were Hindustan Unilever (down 7.96 per cent at Rs 1,638.95), Yes Bank (down 5.81 per cent at Rs 323.45), State Bank of India (down 5.50 per cent at Rs 291.85), ONGC (down 4.33 per cent at Rs 172.15) and Maruti Suzuki (down 4.01 per cent at Rs 8,732.55 per share).

(Ravi Dutta Mishra can be contacted at and Rituraj Baruah can be contacted at