Sensex Ends 51 Points Lower; IT, Pharma Shares Fall – Money Perception

Indian shares ended lower on Thursday on the back of selling in pharma and IT shares. The Sensex fell 50.95 points to close at 31,904.40 while the NSE benchmark Nifty settled 26.30 points lower at 9,873.30 as heavy weights like Infosys, ITC, SBI witnessed profit booking.

Although selling was visible across the sectors, IT and pharma shares fell the most. The IT sub-index of NSE, Nifty IT fell 0.87 per cent while the pharma sub-index of NSE shed 0.91 per cent. Tech Mahindra, HCL Tech, Infosys and Wipro were among the prominent losers in the IT sub-index, falling between 0.7 and 1.35 per cent.

Analysts said quarterly results were likely to remain the main driver of the market in the weeks ahead, at a time when strong gains have raised concerns about valuations.
Wipro Ltd and Reliance Industries Ltd are among the companies expected to announce results later in the day. Their shares fell 0.72 per cent and 0.26 per cent respectively.

“What we see is caution in the market for the near term because of high valuations and as expectations from first-quarter earnings are muted,” said Vinod Nair, head of research at Geojit Financial Services.

Private sector lender Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd fell 1.42 per cent to close at Rs. 980 after rising as much as 2.2 per cent, after posting a 23 per cent jump in its first-quarter net profit, helped by higher interest and fee income.

Among Nifty stocks, Axis Bank was the top gainer, up 3.8 per cent followed by Oil and Natural Gas Corp Ltd, which rose 1.74 percent as traders bet it would be able to buy a 51.1 percent stake in state-refiner Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd without a tender offer. HDFC Bank, Mahindra& Mahindra, Indiabulls Housing Finance were the other big gainers in the Nifty rising between 0.79 per cent and 1.1 per cent.

Meanwhile, Tata Steel was the top loser in Nifty, down 2.45 per cent followed by Bharti Airtel, Aurobindo Pharma, Bank of Baroda, Ultratech Cement.

Mindtree Ltd fell 4.45 percent to its lowest since May 5, after it reported a 1.6 percent drop in June-quarter profit.

State-run lender Canara Bank Ltd closed 5.21 per cent lower after it posted lower-than-expected first-quarter profit due to higher provisions for bad loans.