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NSE Intra-day chart (02 May 2019)
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Market Commentary 03 May 2019
Benchmarks to make a cautious start amid weakness in Asian peers


Indian equity benchmarks witnessed volatility on Thursday, with Sensex and Nifty closing below their crucial psychological levels of 39,000 and 11,750, respectively. After a negative start, key indices managed to keep their heads above water for the most part of the session, taking support with the finance ministry's statement that Goods and Services Tax (GST) collection scaled all-time high in first month (April) of current financial year (FY20).  The total gross GST revenue collected in April 2019 is Rs 1,13,865 crore of which Central GST (CGST) is Rs 21,163 crore, State GST (SGST) is Rs 28,801 crore, Integrated GST (IGST) is Rs 54,733 crore and cess is Rs 9,168 crore. Some relief seemed among traders, with a report stating that the growth of India's eight core sectors improved marginally to 4.7% in March 2019 against 4.5% in the same month last year, helped by a broad-based recovery in sectors such as cement, refinery products, steel, and coal. But, Indian bourses failed to hold gains and ended session in red terrain amid mixed cues from global markets. Trading sentiments got hit as India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) in its latest report lowered India's gross domestic product (GDP) growth projection to 7.3% for fiscal year 2019-20 (FY20), from its earlier projection of 7.5%. The key reasons for the downward revision are the prediction of lower-than-normal monsoon for 2019, continued agrarian distress and the loss of momentum in the industrial output growth, especially manufacturing and electricity. Adding more anxiety on the street, April data signaled further loss in the growth momentum across India's manufacturing sector, reflecting softer increase in new orders. As per the survey report, the Nikkei India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) - a composite single-figure indicator of manufacturing performance - eased to 51.8 in April from 52.6 in March. Finally, the BSE Sensex slipped 50.12 points or 0.13% to 38,981.43, while the CNX Nifty was down by 23.40 points or 0.20% to 11,724.75.


Magnifying their previous session's losses, the US markets ended lower on Thursday with yesterday's remarks by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell suggesting the central bank is not likely to lower interest rates in the near future as some had hoped. Powell said the Fed sees transitory factors contributing to recent low inflation readings. Powell said the Fed would take persistently low inflation into account when setting policy but currently expects inflation to return to the 2 percent objective. Traders also moved out of risky assets such as stocks ahead of the Labor Department's closely watched monthly jobs report on Friday. Employment is expected to increase by 185,000 jobs in April following the addition of 196,000 jobs in March, while the unemployment rate is expected to hold at 3.8 percent. Meanwhile, traders largely shrugged off the release of a batch of largely upbeat US economic data, including a Labor Department report showing a spike in productivity. The Labor Department said productivity surged up by 3.6 percent in the first quarter after climbing by a downwardly revised 1.3 percent in the fourth quarter. The report also said unit labor costs dropped by 0.9 percent in the first quarter after soaring by 2.5 percent in the fourth quarter. The pullback in unit labor costs came as a surprise to investors, who had expected costs to climb by 1.5 percent during the quarter. Besides, a separate report from the Commerce Department showed new orders for manufactured goods jumped by more than expected in March amid a substantial rebound in orders for transportation equipment. The Commerce Department said factory orders spiked by 1.9 percent in March after falling by a revised 0.3 percent in February. Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 122.35 points or 0.46 percent to 26307.79, Nasdaq dropped 12.87 points or 0.16 percent to 8036.77 and S&P 500 was down by 6.21 points or 0.21 percent to 2917.52.


Crude oil futures ended sharply lower on Thursday with energy markets awaiting the next moves from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) as US waivers on Iran oil sanctions expire, and as a jump in domestic supplies and record US crude production continued to weigh on prices. Besides, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported that domestic supplies of natural gas rose by 123 billion cubic feet for the week ended April 26. Analysts polled by S&P Global Platts had expected an increase of 118 billion cubic feet. Benchmark crude oil futures for June dropped $1.79 or 2.8 percent to settle at $61.81 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. July Brent crude declined $1.43 or 2 percent to settle at $70.75 a barrel on London's Intercontinental Exchange.


Continuing strong recovery momentum for the third day, Indian rupee ended higher against US dollar on Thursday, driven by weakening of the greenback in overseas markets. Traders took support with a report stating that the growth of India's eight core sectors improved marginally to 4.7% in March 2019 against 4.5% in the same month last year, helped by a broad-based recovery in sectors such as cement, refinery products, steel, and coal.  Market participants paid no heed towards India Ratings and Research report which marginally lowered country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth projection for 2019-20 fiscal to 7.3% mainly due to below normal monsoon prediction and loss of momentum in industrial output. It had earlier projected India's GDP growth at 7.5%. On the global front, dollar resumed its decline on Thursday, shrugging off Fed Chair Jerome Powell's relatively confident comments on the US economy as survey figures suggested fears of a broadening economic weakness in Europe could be exaggerated. Finally, the rupee ended at 69.37, 19 paise stronger from its previous close of 69.56 on Tuesday.


The FIIs as per Thursday's data were net sellers in equity and debt segments both. In equity segment, the gross buying was of Rs 8429.48 crore against gross selling of Rs 9341.81 crore, while in the debt segment, the gross purchase was of Rs 364.04 crore with gross sales of Rs 1121.42 crore. Besides, in the hybrid segment, the gross buying was of Rs 17.84 crore against gross selling of Rs 24.75 crore.


The US markets ended lower on Thursday for a second straight session, with weakness in petroleum-linked shares dragging the markets further below records earlier in the week. Asian markets are trading weak on Friday amid thin holiday trade as investors pared expectations for a US rate cut this year, while oil prices loitered near one-month lows on oversupply fears. Indian markets ended Thursday's choppy session in red territory with marginal losses for second day in a row, dragged down by banks and IT majors. Today, the markets are likely to make a cautious start amid poor April auto sales data and weak cues from global markets. Investors will also be eyeing election results later this month. Traders will be concerned with the Finance Ministry's monthly report stating that India's economy slowed down slightly in the last fiscal due to declining growth in private consumption, slow increase in fixed investment and muted exports though it is still fastest growing major economy. It further said there is slowdown of growth in agriculture and sustained growth in industry as well as some challenges. Also, there will be some cautiousness with  the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) data showing that India's unemployment rate in April rose to 7.6%, the highest since October 2016, and up from 6.71% in March. Meanwhile, the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) data showed that the 12 large non-performing assets (NPAs or bad loans) accounts directed by the RBI for resolution through insolvency process had total outstanding of Rs 3.45 lakh crore against their liquidation value of Rs 73,220.23 crore, while haircuts taken by creditors in case of the resolved accounts so far have been as high as 90%. There will be some reaction in aviation sector stocks with ICRA's report stating that the pace of growth in air traffic hit a five-year low at 11.6% in fiscal 2019, pulled down by low growth of 3.9% in the March quarter as against a healthy 14.9% in the first three quarters. As per the report, domestic passenger traffic declined by 1.1% in March, overall traffic saw de-growth of 0.1% in the month as international aircraft movement dipped by 1%, while domestic aircraft movement was flat. There will be some buzz in the gems and jewellery industry stocks with the World Gold Council's statement that India's gold demand is expected to rise in the June quarter from a year ago due to a higher number of auspicious days for weddings and a fall in local prices ahead of a key festival. There will be lots of earnings reaction based on the performance of the companies, to keep the markets buzzing.


Support and Resistance: NSE (Nifty) and BSE (Sensex)



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  • Hero MotoCorp has launched three new premium bikes priced between Rs 94,000 and Rs 1.05 lakh, with an eye on leadership position in the segment. 
  • Maruti Suzuki India has reported total sales of 143,245 units in April 2019, as compared 172,986 units in April 2018, registering fall of 17.2%. 
  • Coal India has reported 1% rise in coal production in April 2019 to 45.29 million tonne as compared with 44.86 million tonne year ago. 
  • L&T has acquired around 20% stake in Mindtree from Cafe Coffee Day founder VG Siddhartha through block deal for about Rs 3,210 crore.
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