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Covid resurgence, US Fed spooks investors; PSU bank stocks fall
Mumbai, March 17, 2021
Global cues ahead of the US Federal Reserve's policy statement pulled the Indian benchmark equity indices down for the fourth straight session on Wednesday.
After making an initial intraday high, the NSE Nifty50 slipped to close near its intra-day low.
However, healthy FII inflows on Wednesday arrested the fall to some extent. The FIIs had pumped in Rs 2,625.82 crore.
Among sectors, PSU banks, realty, media, metals and pharma fell the most.
Globally, caution descended on world stock markets as investors waited to see whether the US Fed would signal a faster path toward policy normalisation than previously expected.
On the domestic front, concerns over the second Covid wave and weak global cues led to the fall.
At close, the Nifty50 index fell 1.27 per cent, or 189.15 points, to 14,721.30 points.
Similarly, the S&P BSE Sensex went down by 562.34 points, or 1.12 per cent, to 49,801.62 points from the previous close.
"Nifty has got into a minor correction and the 14,336-14,529 band seems to be the next support level. Deeply negative advance decline ratio is indicative of minor panic among investors to reduce their exposure to these segments," said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research at HDFC Securities.
"A dovish than expected Fed statement tonight could result in a gap up opening, but whether Nifty is able to hold such a gain will be crucial to watch."
Siddhartha Khemka, Head - Retail Research, Motilal Oswal Financial Services, said: "Global cues were weak as investors remained cautious ahead of the US Federal Reserve policy outcome. Treasury yields also held near their highest levels in over a year."
"Resurgence of covid cases in India will be closely monitored in the near term for future market direction. Investors would react to the US Fed MPC outcome tomorrow which is expected to continue with its accommodative stance."