GST Bills passage fails to cheer Indian equities

Mumbai, (IANS): The passage of a major tax reform in the country failed to cheer the Indian equity markets on Thursday.

The key indices were jittery on the day of the March 2017 derivatives contract expiry and traded on a flat note during the mid-afternoon trade session.

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The Lok Sabha on Wednesday passed the much-awaited Central Goods and Services Tax (CGST) Bill, Integrated GST Bill, Compensation GST Bill and Union Territory GST Bill 2017, after negating all the amendments put forward by the Opposition.

“The Lok Sabha passed four major GST Bills after more than eight hours of debate, which supported the firmness in the Indian equity markets at current levels, however with the F&O (futures and options) expiry today we expect the Indian equities to trade with volatile sentiments in rest of the session,” Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls, told IANS.

The wider 51-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) traded in the green at 9,151.55 points — up 7.75 points or 0.08 per cent.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 29,538.03 points, traded at 29,569.45 points (at 12.57 p.m.) — up 38.02 points or 0.13 per cent, from the previous close at 29,531.43 points.

The Sensex has so far touched a high of 29,645.88 points and a low of 29,521.65 points during the intra-day trade.

The BSE market breadth was bullish — with 1,666 advances and 831 declines.

Healthy buying was witnessed in consumer durables and capital goods stocks.

On Wednesday, the benchmark indices extended gains for the second consecutive trade session following positive global cues, a strong rupee and inflow of funds.

The NSE Nifty rose by 43 points or 0.47 per cent to close at 9,143.80 points, while the Sensex closed at 29,531.43 points — up 121.91 points or 0.41 per cent.