Mixed global cues, lower crude prices suppress equity markets

Mumbai: Indian equity markets traded lower during the mid-afternoon session on Tuesday as mixed global cues and lower crude oil prices subdued investors' sentiments. Heavy selling pressure was witnessd in capital goods and oil and gas stocks. The wider 51-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) slipped by 22.70 points, or 0.26 per cent to 8,606.45 points. The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 28,012.56 points, traded at 27,933.71 points (at 1.50 p.m.) -- down 51.83 points, or 0.19 per cent from the previous close at 27,985.54 points. The Sensex has so far touched a high of 28,028.98 points and a low of 27,902.78 points during the intra-day trade. The BSE market breadth was minimally tilted in favour of the bears -- with 1,263 declines and 1,245 advances. On Monday, both the key Indian indices were suppressed by negative global cues and a weak rupee. The barometer index had receded by 91.46 points, or 0.33 per cent, while the NSE Nifty edged down 37.75 points, or 0.44 per cent. Initially on Tuesday, the benchmark indices opened on a flat-to-negative note on the back of lower Asian and US markets, although the the European markets closed higher. The markets also traded with apprehension as caution prevailed ahead of a speech by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen later in the week. Investors are vigilant of a possible interest rate hike in the US as this can potentially lead FPIs (Foreign Portfolio Investors) away from emerging markets such as India.  In addition, lower crude oil prices led the key indices to cap gains. However, a marginal recovery in rupee value kept the market spirits slightly buoyed. “The markets are devoid of any major action and are mostly in a consolidating phase at present,” Anand James, Chief Market Strategist at Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services said. “However, the rupee is firm and has strengthened from yesterday's close. Also, the foreign institutional investors have been net sellers for the first time in August.”