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NSE Intra-day chart (11 December 2017)
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Market Commentary 12 December 2017
Markets to make a green start on positive global cues

Indian equity benchmarks extended their rally for third straight day and went home with a gain of over half a percent, recapturing their crucial 33,400 (Sensex) and 10,300 (Nifty) levels. Sentiments remained up-beat throughout the session with markets making a gap-up opening after CII's Business Confidence Index climbed to 59.7 during October-December 2017, against 58.3 in the previous quarter, as reform measures such as the Goods and Services Tax (GST) instilled optimism in India Inc. Traders also took some encouragement with statement of the prime minister's economic advisory panel member Rathin Roy who has expressed hope that the forthcoming budget will not be a 'populist' and will reflect the commitment of the government to improve quality of expenditure. Meanwhile, industry body Assocham has said that the government needs to accord top priority to agriculture in the budget as a major shortfall in kharif production resulted in sluggish growth of farm sector in the second quarter this fiscal. Markets accelerated speed in last leg of trade to end near intraday high levels after former Reserve Bank Governor Y V Reddy said that Indian economy may require two more years to consolidate and it should aim to go back to 7.5-8 percent growth in two years. Some support also came with the Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi's statement that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council would examine the possibility of merging the 12 and 18 percent tax rates to a new slab. He added that more than 90 percent of issues related to tax rates have been resolved after the Council brought down 178 items from higher rates to lower one. Besides, report that Direct Tax collections, which comprise personal income and corporate tax, surged 14.4 percent to Rs 4.8 lakh crore in the first eight months ending November 2017, mainly on account of income tax mop-up from individuals, too aided sentiments. Finally, the BSE Sensex soared 205.49 points or 0.62% to 33,455.79, while the CNX Nifty was up by 56.60 points or 0.55% to 10,322.25.


The US markets closed higher on Monday, with the S&P 500 index and Dow industrials closing at records on the back of a rally in telecommunications and technology shares. Wall Street shrugged off news of a terrorism incident in the heart of New York City earlier in the session, which resulted in no fatalities. Investors mostly looked ahead to the Federal Reserve's two-day monetary-policy meeting, which is slated to conclude Wednesday. The central bank is largely expected to deliver its third, and last, interest-rate hike for 2017. On the economy front, the number of job openings in the country fell to a hair under 6 million in October from a record 6.18 million in the prior month. About 5.55 million people were hired and 4.85 million lost their jobs. The share of people who left jobs on their own, known as the quits rate, was unchanged at 2.4% among private-sector employees. It was 2.2% if government workers are included. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 56.87 points or 0.23 percent to 24,386.03, the Nasdaq gained 34.997 points or 0.51 percent to 6,875.08, while the S&P 500 edged higher by 8.49 points or 0.32 percent to 2,659.99. 


Crude oil futures continued their gaining streak to the new week and ended higher on Monday, mid supply disruptions after a major North Sea pipeline shut for repairs. The major pipeline crack in the UK's North Sea which carries 40% of North Sea oil and gas has caused Brent crude oil prices to spike fast than US oil, leading the Brent crude to reach its highest since 2015. Oil prices shrugged off somewhat bearish comments from UAE Energy Minister Suhail bin Mohammed al-Mazroui, who said OPEC and non-OPEC producers plan to announce in June an exit strategy from global supply cuts. Benchmark crude oil futures for January delivery ended higher by $0.63 or 1.1 percent at $57.99 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude for February delivery was up by 2.1 percent to $64.72 a barrel on the ICE.


Rising for the second straight day, Indian rupee ended marginally higher against dollar on Monday, owing to dollar sale by exporters and banks. Traders took support with CII's Business Confidence Index climbing to 59.7 during October-December 2017, against 58.3 in the previous quarter, as reform measures such as the Goods and Services Tax instilled optimism in India Inc. Some optimism also came with data showing that direct Tax collections, which comprise personal income and corporate tax, surged 14.4 percent to Rs 4.8 lakh crore in the first eight months ending November 2017, mainly on account of income tax mop-up from individuals. However, gains were limited as some caution lingered in the market ahead of release of crucial macro-economic data- October IIP and November CPI data, which are scheduled to be released tomorrow. On the global front, dollar edged lower on Monday on disappointing US wages data that analysts said could weigh on the pace of interest rate hikes from the Federal Reserve next year. Finally, the rupee ended at 64.36, 9 paise stronger from its previous close of 64.45 on Friday.


The FIIs as per Monday's data were net buyers in equity and debt segments both. In equity segment, the gross buying was of Rs 6846.32 crore against gross selling of Rs 6802.69 crore, while in the debt segment, the gross purchase was of Rs 1063.09 crore with gross sales of Rs 964.25 crore.


The US markets continued their upmove and the Dow and the S&P 500 reached new record closing highs in the last session, even though traders seemed somewhat reluctant to make significant moves ahead of the Federal Reserve's monetary policy announcement on Wednesday. The Asian markets have made mostly a positive start though traders are a bit cautious awaiting U.S. and European central bank meetings this week for further clues on the 2018 policy outlook. The Indian markets regained their momentum in the final hours to post decent gains of over half a percent in the last session, on firm global cues. Today, the start is likely to remain positive tailing supportive global cues. Traders will also be getting some support with the UN DESA's World Economic Situation and Prospects 2018 report, which has said that despite a slowdown observed in early 2017, the outlook for India remains positive, underpinned by strong private consumption, robust public investments and structural reforms. It has forecast that the Indian economy will grow by 7.2 per cent in 2018 and 7.4 per cent in 2019. Meanwhile, Economists as part of pre-budget consultations have suggested a range of measures, including increasing social security pension, to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. The finance minister though reiterated that the government is following the roadmap of fiscal consolidation under which the fiscal deficit, as a ratio of GDP, stood at 3.9 per cent in 2015-16 and 3.5 per cent in 2016-17 and is budgeted to be 3.2 per cent for the current financial year. He also expressed confidence in the economic situation after demonetisation and rollout of the Goods and Services Tax and said the second quarter GDP growth marks the reversal of the declining trend of growth witnessed in the last few quarters. Traders will also be eyeing the release of the IIP data for October and inflation data based on consumer price index (CPI) for November after the market hours.


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