Nifty Bulls Stand Strong Even As FIIs Offload Indian Equities

The FIIs are being completely neutralised by sustained buying by the domestic institutional investors.

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The NSE Nifty 50 has risen over 2% since the beginning of the year and is consistently reaching record highs.

The benchmark index achieved a new milestone on Friday, soaring to a new all-time high of 22,297.50 during the day.

Despite this bullish trend, the markets have experienced an outflow of 25,980 crore so far this year till Feb. 22. The foreign portfolio investors offloaded $3,096 million or Rs 25,744 crore worth of stocks in January, the highest in a year.

The country's bonds are poised to become more appealing, presenting an alternative investment avenue in the financial landscapes.

The big emerging market worry of rising bond yields in the U.S. is not impacting India since the foreign institutional investors have been forced to reduce their selling, according to VK Vijayakumar, chief investment strategist at Geojit Financial Services Ltd.

The FIIs are being completely neutralised by the sustained buying by the domestic institutional investors as well as retail exuberance, Vijayakumar said. "The main trigger for this divergent trend in equity and debt is the high valuation in the Indian equity market and the rising bond yields in the U.S."

Net investment into equity and equity-linked schemes in January surged 28% over the previous month to Rs 21,780 crore, the highest since March 2022, according to data released by the Association of Mutual Funds in India.

The mutual funds industry across debt and equity schemes recorded an inflow of Rs 1.23 lakh crore during the month against an outflow of Rs 40,684 crore in December. Contribution of the systematic investment plans to the mutual funds industry stood at a record Rs 18,838 crore in January, compared to Rs 17,610 crore in December.

"This resilient domestic buying is providing the main support to the ongoing rally in the market, and the strong performance of the economy and improving corporate earnings are solid fundamental support to the market," Vijayakumar said.

January Blues: HDFC Bank Woes Trigger Largest FPI Outflow In One Year

"The problem for India is that valuations, whilst they're not killing, but they're not so attractive if you compare it to China," Andrew Holland, chief executive officer of Avendus Capital Public Markets Alternate Strategies LLP, told NDTV Profit.

"It has been a great rally, don't get me wrong. And I think everyone's scratching their head a little bit, how they missed it," he said.

Holland does not want to push into this market "aggressively" when a lot of the gains have already been made in individual stocks rather than just the indices.

Investments will start pouring into the emerging markets when there is stabilisation in China's property and stock markets as some of that money might also flow into India, according to the Avendus Capital CEO.

HDFC Bank Saw Mixed January As Mutual Funds Cushioned FII Selloff, Says Nuvama

The markets are currently anticipating a clear mandate in the Lok Sabha election, with expectations of continued political reforms. This optimism is driving the markets to achieve all-time highs consistently, according to Vinod Karki, senior vice president of equity research at ICICI Securities.

"What could surprise markets is if the election results are not as clear as initially thought to be," he told NDTV Profit.

Among emerging markets, overseas investors offloaded Indian shares the most so far this year after Brazil, according to Bloomberg data.

India was the largest recipient of flows from the FPIs in 2023 among emerging markets. The FPIs were sellers in Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam last year.

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