Sensex, Nifty Start On A Positive Note, Tracking Global Stocks Surge

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Equity benchmarks gained sharply to reverse fag-end sell-off in the previous session

Indian equity benchmarks started Friday on a strong note, reversing the fag-end sell-off in the previous session, tracking a broad surge in risk assets, ahead of the widely awaited speech from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell on the rate-hike path later in the day.

The BSE Sensex index surged 494.54 points, or 0.84 per cent, to 59,269.26, and the NSE Nifty jumped 149.70 points, or 0.85 per cent, to 17,672.15.

The Nifty IT index climbed 1.6 per cent after four straight sessions of losses, while the Nifty Metal index added 2 per cent.

From the Sensex pack, Titan, Tech Mahindra, Mahindra & Mahindra, Tata Steel, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Wipro, Infosys and Axis Bank were among the major winners.

On the other, Bharti Airtel and Nestle were the laggards.

That optimism comes buoyed by news of possible progress for China and the United States to hammer out an audit deal.

Chinese technology companies listed in Hong Kong, which increased 1.3 per cent, were the main driver of MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside of Japan’s 0.6 per cent gain in early Asian trading. Alibaba’s shares in Hong Kong increased by 4 per cent.

As a result, the Asian index gained 0.4 per cent for the week.

According to a Wall Street Journal article on Thursday, Washington and Beijing are close to letting American accounting regulators visit Hong Kong to review audit records of Chinese companies listed on American stock exchanges.

The Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong increased by 0.7 per cent, South Korea gained 0.5 per cent, and the Nikkei in Japan increased by 0.9 per cent.

But investors remain jittery ahead of the US Federal Reserve’s annual Jackson Hole conference for clues on how sharp future interest rate hikes might be.

“Intra-day markets could remain volatile as investors will likely maintain caution ahead of Powell’s speech at the Jackson Hole symposium. Investors are worried that the Fed Chair will double-down on the central bank’s inflation fight,” said Prashanth Tapse, Senior Vice President for Research at Mehta Equities.

“Technically, markets may stay bullish as long as Nifty stays above its biggest make-or-break support at 17,345,” he added.

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