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Sensex, Nifty 50 end in the red after hitting record highs; Vix up

Election uncertainty, FPI selling stoke volatility

stock market trading

Sundar Sethuraman Mumbai

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The domestic markets hit new intraday highs on Monday but witnessed another turbulent trading session to end 0.8 per cent lower from the highest points. The India Vix Index, a gauge for near-term volatility, surged nearly 7 per cent to end at 23.2, the highest in almost two years.

After climbing to 76,010, the Sensex finished at 75,391, down 20 points, or 0.03 per cent, over the previous day’s close. The Nifty hit a new high of 23,111 but ended the session at 22,933, with a drop of 24 points, or 0.1 per cent.

The markets have rebounded sharply from the month’s low amid growing optimism that the incumbent Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government will win a third time. However, selling is emerging at higher levels with some investors looking to take some profits off the table due to nervousness around the margin of victory for the BJP.

Market players said stock prices at current levels were pricing in 300-plus seats for the BJP and a lower tally could disappoint the Street.
The lower turnout in the elections had raised concerns about how voter fatigue may impact the final outcome on June 4.

Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) sold shares worth Rs 541 crore, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) pumped in Rs 923 crore on Monday. So far this month, FPIs have yanked out Rs 23,000 crore from domestic stocks, stoking volatility in the market.

However, despite the sharp FPI selloff, Indian equities have been resilient amid strong buying by domestic institutional investors, and the recent surge in banking stocks after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) transferred Rs 2.11 trillion dividend to the government for 2023-24, surpassing analysts' and the government's expectations of Rs 1.02 trillion.

"The presence of resistance around the 23,100 level in the Nifty, along with a rise in the volatility index, India VIX, limited the upside. We may see further consolidation in the index ahead, so participants should focus on careful stock selection and effective trade management," said Ajit Mishra, SVP - research, Religare Broking.

The market breadth continued to remain on the weaker side, with 2,323 stocks declining, and 1,650 advancing.

Among Sensex components, IndusInd Bank, Axis Bank, Bajaj Finance and HDFC Bank were the biggest gainers. Wipro fell the most at 2.4 per cent, after its exclusion from the index was announced.

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First Published: May 27 2024 | 9:07 PM IST

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