Sensex Retreats After Flirting With Record; Jet Airways Plunges

(Bloomberg) -- Indian equities dropped after key gauges flirted with all-time highs. Jet Airways India Ltd. slumped by a record after the airline suspended operations amid a funding crunch.

The benchmark S&P BSE Sensex fell 0.3 percent to 39,140.28 at the 3:30 p.m. close in Mumbai, reversing earlier gains. The NSE Nifty 50 Index dropped by the same magnitude. Both had hit records on Tuesday. The market was shut on Wednesday and will be closed on Friday for public holidays.

Local equities have gained from a gush of foreign money this year amid a rising appetite for riskier assets as central banks globally revert to a dovish monetary stance. Overseas investors have bet on lower interest rates and inflation, growth in company profits and the increasing chance that the incumbent national government will retain power. India is holding the second of seven rounds of voting that will span until May 19, with counting on May 23.

Strategist View

  • “The current market rally is a result of robust foreign flows, more so on the back of a better risk environment, led by softer rates and a better liquidity outlook,” said Vaibhav Sanghavi, co-chief executive officer at Mumbai-based Avendus Capital PBC Markets Alternate Strategies LLP
  • The election is a binary event; however, investors looking at the opinion polls are taking some comfort from them, he said
  • Better corporate profits would be a key tailwind medium-term, he said

The Numbers

  • Even after Thursday’s decline, the Sensex and the Nifty have each advanced nearly 1 percent this week, their eighth week of gains in the past nine
  • Yes Bank Ltd.’s 4.2 percent drop was the steepest among Nifty members, reducing its rally this year to 40 percent
  • Reliance Industries Ltd. -- India’s most valued company -- gained 3.1 percent after it was said to consider selling as much as 25 percent of its refinery business; It reports its January to March earnings later on Thursday
  • Seventeen of the the 19 sector indexes compiled by BSE Ltd. retreated, paced by a gauge of property stocks; The S&P BSE Energy Index rose the most
  • Twenty-three of the 31 Sensex members and 30 of the 50 Nifty companies declined.
  • Jet Airways slumped 31 percent, the steepest on S&P BSE 500 Index; Rival SpiceJet Ltd. gained 2.7 percent

Analyst Notes/Market-Related Stories

  • Nifty Index’s Positive Bias Likely to Continue: Kotak Securities
  • A $6 Trillion Reason to Buy Into Asian Equities: Taking Stock

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