Sensex, Nifty Edge Higher; Axis Bank Falls After September Quarter Earnings

Sensex, Nifty Edge Higher; Axis Bank Falls After September Quarter Earnings

The Indian equity benchmarks edged higher on Wednesday led by gains in Asian Paints, Reliance Industries, Infosys, HDFC, TCS and Sun Pharma. However, the upside was caped owing to weakness in Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, Bajaj Finance and Reliance Industries. The Sensex rose as much as 210 points and Nifty 50 index touched an intraday high of 18,331.30. Meanwhile, other Asian markets were trading lower with Japan's Nikkei down 0.55 per cent, Hong Kong's Hang Seng index falling 1.46 per cent, South Korea's KOSPI declining 0.76 per cent and Shanghai Composite index down 0.7 per cent.

As of 9:27 am, the Sensex was up 24 points at 61,374 and Nifty 50 index advanced 12 points to 18,280.

Overnight, equity markets gained globally on Tuesday as upbeat corporate earnings buoyed investor appetite for riskier investments, while gold prices fell nearly 1 per cent.

On Wall Street, Facebook Inc was the biggest drag on the S&P 500 and Nasdaq, after the company warned that Apple Inc's new privacy changes would weigh on its digital business.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.04 per cent to 35,756.88; the S&P 500 gained 0.18 per cent at 4,574.79; and the Nasdaq Composite added 0.06 per cent at 15,235.72.

Back home, nine of 15 sector gauges compiled by the National Stock Exchange were trading higher led by the Nifty PSU Bank index's 1.2 per cent gain. Nifty Pharma, FMCG, Healthcare, Consumer Durables, IT and Oil & Gas indices also rose between 0.2-0.8 per cent.

On the other hand, Nifty Bank, Financial Services, Media, Metal and Private Bank indices were trading lower.

Mid- and small-cap shares were also witnessing buying interest as Nifty Midcap 100 index rose 0.52 per cent and Nifty Smallcap 100 index advanced 0.7 per cent.

Asian Paints was top Nifty gainer, the stock rose over 5 per cent to Rs 3,126. State Bank of India, UPL, SBI Life, Divi's Labs, HDFC Life, ICICI Bank, ITC, Shree Cements and Nestle India also rose between 0.9-1.8 per cent.

On the flipside, Axis Bank was top Nifty loser, the stock fell nearly 4 per cent to Rs 810 despite reporting its highest-ever quarterly profit at Rs 3,133 crore on a standalone basis, compared to Rs 1,682.67 crore in the corresponding period last year, marking a growth of 86 per cent year-on-year.

Bajaj Finance fell 3.32 per cent to Rs 7,595 after September quarter earnings. Tata Motors, Hindalco, ONGC, Tech Mahindra, Tata Steel, Bajaj Finserv, Coal India, JSW Steel, HDFC Bank and Power Grid were also among the laggards.

The overall market breadth was positive as 1,882 shares were advancing while 817 were declining in the BSE.