Sensex, Nifty Edge Higher Amid Choppy Trade, Pharma Stocks Gain Around 2%
Shares rose on Wednesday, with pharmaceutical stocks rising after the country approved a COVID-19 pill, though year-end portfolio adjustments limited gains.
At 1:00 pm, the NSE Nifty 50 index was up 0.02 per cent at 17,237.65 and the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex was up 0.05 per cent at 57,926.52.
Anita Gandhi, Whole Time Director, Arihant Capital Markets, said, “We are nearing the end of (derivatives) and it is late December. There is volatility and we are also approaching some degree of stability in the markets.”
Indian markets are down more than seven per cent since peaking in October, driven by concerns over higher valuations and as the Omicron version of COVID-19 has rapidly spread across the globe.
“There has been a fall in overall volumes and markets are consolidating in lower volumes. Even a slight uptick towards the end of the year cannot be ruled out on account of net asset value-based buying,” Gandhi said.
The Nifty Pharma index rose 0.9 per cent a day after India approved Merck’s COVID-19 pill and two more vaccines for emergency use.
Earlier this year, several drug manufacturers including Dr Reddy’s Labs, Aurobindo Pharma, Cipla and Sun Pharmaceuticals signed non-exclusive voluntary licensing agreements with Merck to manufacture and supply Molnupiravir in India.
Dr Reddy’s and Sun Pharma were the top losers in the Nifty 50 index, rising 1.5 per cent each.
Metals were the top drag in the Nifty Metal index, falling 1.2 per cent.
India’s markets regulator on Tuesday tightened rules for companies going public, potentially slowing down some planned new issues, as it seeks to protect retail investors after a record year of initial public offerings (IPOs). .
Asian stocks fell after a mixed Wall Street session as investors in the region positioned their portfolios for the new year.
(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)