Mumbai: Equity benchmark indices ended in the red amid volatile session on Friday (February 14) with the Sensex down 202.05 points or 0.49% at 41,257.74, and the broader Nifty also ending 61.20 points down or 0.50% at 12,113.50. Among major gainers on the Nifty were Yes Bank, Bharti Airtel, UPL, and HCL Tech, while GAIL, IndusInd Bank, Bharti Infratel, Eicher Motors, and Power Grid Corp were among major losers.
All the sectoral indices ended lower, with PSU Bank Index down 2 per cent followed by auto, FMCG, metal, energy and IT. About 901 shares advanced, 1589 shares declined, and 170 shares remained unchanged.
During early hours on Friday, equity benchmark indices were in the positive zone taking cues from Asian markets with buying in banking and technology stocks. At 10:15 am, the BSE S&P Sensex edged higher by 74 points to 41,534 while the Nifty 50 ticked up by 21 points at 12,196.
All sectoral indices at the National Stock Exchange were in the green with Nifty PSU bank and IT up by 0.7 per cent each. Yes Bank added gains of 6.4 per cent at Rs 39.60 per share, and Tata Motors was also up by 3.5 per cent at Rs 175.40 while UPL advanced by 2 per cent at Rs 590.85.
Among other prominent gainers were Grasim, UltraTech Cement, Asian Paints, Bharat Petroleum Corporation and HCL Technologies, but Eicher Motors, IndusInd Bank, Coal India, Dr Reddy`s and ONGC dropped with thin margins.
Meanwhile, Asian shares edged up with investors hoping that governments will make provisions to soften the impact on their economies from coronavirus epidemic. MSCI`s broadest index of Asia Pacific shares outside Japan ticked up by 0.3 per cent, led by gains in Hong Kong and South Korea. But Japan`s Nikkei dropped by 0.55 per cent after news of first coronavirus death.
European shares touched record highs on Friday as investors digested whether China`s coronavirus outbreak would cause long-lasting damage to global economy. Europe`s broad Euro STOXX 600 clawed up 0.1% to follow Asian markets higher in choppy early trading, even as indexes in Paris and London both fell 0.2%.
In both cases, corporate results weighed, with a 5% fall for AstraZeneca dragging London shares down as the drugmaker said it would take a hit from the coronavirus outbreak.
France`s Renault, meanwhile, fell 4.2% on its first loss in 10 years as it set a lower operating margin goal for 2020, a crunch year for its planned reboot alongside partner Nissan after a scandal surrounding former boss Carlos Ghosn.
Currency traders had matters beyond the coronavirus on their minds. The euro slumped to another near-three-year low, with worries lingering about slowing growth in the eurozone and rising political uncertainties in Germany.
The single currency has lost 1% so far this week and is on track for its worst two-weekly performance since mid-2018, with investors watching out for an estimate of how the economy performed in the fourth quarter, due at 1000 GMT.
Eurozone GDP data due later on Friday is expected to show a sluggish growth of 0.1% from the previous quarter. The euro fell to as low as $1.0827, and last stood flat at $1.0830. Others signalled growing demand for the US dollar.
Against a basket of currencies, the dollar hit a four-month high. It has risen 1.8% so far this month.
(With Agency Inputs)