Taking Stock: Sensex, Nifty slip over 1% as investors stay cautious ahead of Fed meet outcome

Today's Market

Market on March 17 remained under bears’ control as broad-based sell-off dragged the benchmark indices over a percent. Investors remained cautious ahead of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) decision on interest rate due later in the day.

At close, the Sensex was down 562.34 points or 1.12 percent at 49,801.62, while the Nifty index slipped 189.20 points or 1.27 percent to 14,721.30 levels.

“Indian market remained in negative territory as investors traded cautiously ahead of the US Fed meeting coupled with a resurgence in COVID cases. Adding to that, the rise in international crude prices is also dragging the Indian market,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

“Global markets also displayed a weak opening as it awaits the final decision of the FOMC meeting today, which will decide the trend of the market in the short-term. On a consensus basis, an accommodative policy is expected by Fed, which will help the global market to stabilise,” Nair added.

All the sectoral indices ended in the red with Nifty PSU Bank index falling nearly 4 percent. BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices shed 2 percent each.

ONGC, BPCL, Tata Motors, Adani Ports and Coal India (CIL) were among the major losers, while gainers included ITC, TCS, Infosys and HDFC.

Stocks & sectors

Sectorally, the S&P Oil & Gas index fell 3 percent, while Metal, Power, Realty and Capital Goods indices shed over 2 percent each.

Among individual stocks, a volume spike of more than 100 percent was seen in Godrej Properties, Gujarat Gas and Glenmark Pharma.

Short buildup was seen in Ashok Leyland, Gujarat Gas and RBL Bank.

More than 150 stocks, including Vedanta, Mindtree and Delta Corp hit a fresh 52-week high on the BSE.

Technical View

The Nifty formed a strong bearish candle on daily scale and continued its weakness for the fourth consecutive session.

“Till Nifty remains below 14,900 zone, weakness could be seen towards 14,600 and 14,500 zones while on the upside, hurdles shift lower to 14,950 and 15,050 zones,” said Chandan Taparia of Motilal Oswal Financial Services (MOFSL).

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