Aided by strong global cues, the Indian stock market posted gains on three of the four sessions (the market was closed for Christmas holiday on Wednesday) during the week ended 27 December 2013.
Movements were quite sluggish for most part of the week as a section of investors chose even small rallies to trim down positions, choosing to wait for some clear signals for near term. Activity in the F&O segment ahead of near month derivatives expiry too contributed to some volatility in the market.
While the BSE benchmark Sensex ended the week with a gain of 113.86 points or 0.54% at 21,193.58, the Nifty index of the National Stock Exchange closed up 39.55 points or 0.63% at 6313.80. Midcap and smallcap stocks outperformed the big ones, lifting the BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices up by around 2.5% and 3.6%, respectively.
The market started off on a firm note on Monday, with an upbeat report on U.S. GDP for the third quarter and the resultant firm trend in Asian markets prompting investors to indulge in some strong buying in early trades.
However, the market pared most of its gains after a choppy ride and ended the day just marginally up, with the Sensex adding 21.31 points and the Nifty moving up by about 10 points.
On Tuesday, the market retreated due to lack of triggers. The Sensex lost about 68 points and the Nifty declined by around 16 points.
Despite a strong round of selling in the final hour that resulted in a very brief spell to negative territory, the market ended on the positive side on Thursday. The Sensex, which dropped down to 21,013.14 after rising to 21,135.85, ended the day with a modest gain of 41.88 points, while the Nifty closed up 10.50 points.
On Friday, the market opened on a firm note and traded in positive territory, with investors indulging in some buying right through the session, tracking global cues. An upbeat U.S. jobs report and the resultant surge on Wall Street overnight set up the day for the Asian markets, and with European markets too following suit, the mood on the Indian bourses remained quite positive during the session.
The Sensex ended the day with a gain of 119 points, while the Nifty closed higher by about 35 points.
Index heavyweight Reliance Industries ended the week with a loss of about 1.7%, despite seeing some bright spells. However, ONGC, the other heavyweight from the oil space, ended stronger by 2.8%. The PSU oil & gas exploration giant announced during the week that its subsidiary ONGC Videsh has temporarily suspended its oilfield operations in South Sudan.
IT stocks had a good week, thanks to some upbeat economic data out of the U.S. Tata Consultancy Services moved up by over 2% and Wipro notched up a gain of 1.6%, while Infosys ended with a modest gain.
Index heavyweight and cigarette major ITC rose 2.09% to Rs 321.80.
Capital goods stocks saw some buying during the week. Sector heavyweights BHEL (4.7%) and Larsen & Toubro (1.5%) posted strong gains. Reports about a big order win propped up BHEL shares.
Automobile stocks were quite sluggish last week. While Tata Motors, Mahindra & Mahindra, Maruti Suzuki and Hero Motocorp closed weak, losing 0.6% - 2%, Bajaj Auto bucked the trend and ended modestly higher.
Among banking sector heavyweights, ICICI Bank ended up 1.7%, State Bank of India gained 1.1% and HDFC Bank closed higher by about half a percent. Several other bank stocks, including Axis Bank (1.1%) saw some bright spells in positive territory during the week, although only a few of them managed to sustain at higher levels.
Metal stocks Hindalco and Tata Steel moved higher. Cipla and NTPC also closed the week on a firm note. Tata Power and HDFC declined.
Realty, FMCG and consumer durables stocks turned in a mixed performance during the week.