RBI’s status-quo on rates, stance buoys market: Power stocks rise

Mumbai: The RBI MPC’s decision to retain key lending rates buoyed India’s key benchmark equity indices — S&P BSE Sensex and NSE Nifty50 — on Thursday. Accordingly, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the central bank maintained the repo rate, or short-term lending rate, for commercial banks, at 4 per cent.

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Besides, the growth-oriented accommodative stance was retained to give a push to economic activity. Initially, indices opened with a marginal up-gap, but fell soon thereafter to make an intra day low. They later rose after the RBI’s announcement.

Globally, a tech-fuelled global stocks rally cooled in Asia on Thursday as investors took a more cautious posture amid uncertainties around the outlook for inflation and interest rates.

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However, European stock markets climbed higher as investors digested a barrage of company results. On the domestic front, volumes on the NSE were back at recent average.

Among sectoral indices, power, metals and IT sectors gained the most whereas capital goods, consumer durables and auto lost the most.

Consequently, Sensex settled at 58,926.03 points, up 0.79 per cent or 460.06 points from the previous close, Nifty at 17,605.85 points, up 0.81 per cent or 142.05 points from the previous close.

“Nifty rose on Thursday but the advance decline ratio fell to almost equal suggesting that the broader market is refusing to participate in the same measure and the current rally may be running out of steam,” said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research, HDFC Securities.

“Nifty could face resistance at 17,706 while 17,477 could offer support in the near term. US inflation numbers for January due this evening and the response by the western markets to it will be watched keenly.”

According to Siddhartha Khemka, Head – Retail Research, Motilal Oswal Financial Services: “Nifty has rallied almost 600 points in the last 3 days from a low of 17,043 on the back of value buying from domestic investors while reduced selling from FIIs.”

“Stable monetary policy from RBI has also added to the positive sentiments… The five state assembly elections have started from today, would be keenly watched by market.”

In addition, Geojit Financial Services’ Head of Research Vinod Nair said: “The domestic market maintained its upward momentum aided by strong global cues and positive RBI policy.”

“Though the market expected RBI to moderate its policy tone, the central bank surprised with a super dovish statement by maintaining its accommodative stance, modest inflation forecast and GDP growth of 7.8 per cent in FY23. Global market rallied ahead of the release of the US inflation data backed by healthy earnings results”

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