MUMBAI: Expectation of lower interest rates with further liquidity infusion by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) under its new chief, along with healthy macro-economic data points, drove the key equity indices forward. The domestic equity market opened on a dismal note, but a sharp bounce back after the five Assembly election results drove the S&P BSE Sensex and the NSE Nifty50 to their fourth straight session of gains. "While the resignation (of RBI Governor Urjit Patel) took the market by surprise, leading to concerns over the independence of RBI as an institution, the quick announcement of the appointment of the new Governor (Shaktikanta Das) has helped allay these fears," said Shibani Kurian, Senior Vice President, Head of Equity Research, Kotak Mahindra Asset Management.
The new Governor, former senior bureaucrat Shaktikanta Das, is seen close to the present dispensation at the Centre.
Another key theme of the week was normalisation of Brent Crude oil to around $60 after a short-term upward mobility due to Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) production cut announcement.
("We expect the (crude) prices will increase now," said Anuj Gupta, Deputy Vice President - Research, Commodities and Forex, Angel Broking.)
"Crude oil production cut by OPEC was below expectation which had sparked a short-term volatility, but normalised subsequently. Also, US inventories have gone down this week," Anuj Gupta, Deputy Vice President - Research, Commodities and Forex, Angel Broking, told IANS.
"We expect the (crude) prices will increase now as the actual affect of the production cut will start to show from January."
However, towards the end of the week, advances were capped across the globe as growth concerns grew after China, the world's second-largest economy, reported slowing retail growth.
Consequently, global equity markets ended the week on a negative note.
In terms of investments, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) were net sellers during the review as they off-loaded a total of Rs 2,067.19 crore worth of shares, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) sold scrips worth Rs 153.21 crore, provisional data from the BSE showed.
Index-wise, the S&P BSE Sensex gained 289.68 points, or 0.81 per cent, to close at 35,962.93 points, whereas the 50-share NSE Nifty advanced 111.75 points, or 1.04 per cent, to settle at 10,805.45 points.
Similarly, the local currency also gained in the past week. The rupee strengthened by 1.1 to 71.90 against the US dollar from its previous week's close of 70.80.
According to HDFC Securities' Retail Research Head Deepak Jasani: "Technically, with the Nifty rallying higher for the fourth consecutive session, the bulls remain in control. Further upsides are likely in the coming week once the immediate resistances of 10,941 points are taken out."
"Crucial supports to watch for any weakness are at 10,588 points."
On a weekly basis, the top gainers on the BSE and the NSE were Yes Bank and Hero MotoCorp which gained over 8 per cent each, followed by ONGC, SBI, Bharti Airtel and Mahindra and Mahindra, which gained in the range of 4 to 5 per cent.
In contrast, HDFC lost 2.46 per cent, the most during the week. It was followed by Kotak Mahindra Bank, Reliance Industries, Adani Ports and HDFC Bank.
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