Indian equities end higher for second straight week


Mumbai : Despite heavy profit taking on two successive days, Indian equities ended higher for the second straight week Friday, helped by some heavy buying by foreign funds and notable gains by metals and consumer goods stocks.

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Looking ahead, analysts expect the markets to move either ways in a narrow range in the ensuing sessions, since the situation has changed little fundamentally. The fall in inflation, though, should lend some support, they added.

The sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) ended Friday at 14,338.45 points with a net gain of 35.04 points, or 0.24 percent, over the previous week's close at 14,303.41 points.

The broad-based Nifty of the National Stock Exchange too ended higher by close to 8 percent. It touched an all-time high of 4,260.90 points Monday and breached it by another 17.20 points, or 0.40 percent, Tuesday at 4,278.10 points.

"With Nifty climbing up to an all time high and the Sensex also floating around higher levels, one cannot expect too much of a forward movement during the next few sessions," an analyst with a leading brokerage here said.

"But some buying interest can emerge in individual stocks, based on performance, which investors will definitely watch out for," the analyst added.

Trading started on a positive note Monday with the Sensex gaining 115.19 points, or 0.81 percent, at 14,418.60 points, followed by another rally of 35.12 points, or 0.24 percent, to 14,453.72 points Tuesday.

The next two days, however, saw the key index dip on account of profit taking. The index fell 90.46 points, or 0.63 percent, Wednesday, followed by a drop of 145.15 points, or 1.01 percent, the next day at 14,218.11 points.

The key index managed to make some recovery Friday, albeit marginal, which saw it rise by 120.34 points, or 0.85 percent, to close at 14.338.45 points. The index now stands higher by 109.57 points, or 0.77 percent, over the past month.

Capital goods stocks were the flavour of the week with its sector specific index rising 3.5 percent. The indices for fast moving consumer goods (2.08 percent), metals (2.25 percent) and oil and gas (1.08 percent) also made sound gains.

But banking stocks lost steam, with the sectoral index taking a dip of 1.80 percent. Similarly, auto stocks were also down 1.03 percent, data available with the stock exchanged showed.

Even though domestic mutual funds emerged net sellers during the week, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) were net buyers to the tune of $700.60 million, making purchases during each of the five trading days.

Data available with the markets watchdog, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), showed FIIs bought shares worth $299 million Monday, $113 million Tuesday, $107 million Wednesday, $105.8 million Thursday and $75.8 million Friday.