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NSE Intra-day chart (24 March 2021)
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Market Commentary 25 March 2021
Markets to get flat-to-positive start amid gains in Asian peers


Indian equity benchmarks ended sharply lower with losses of over one and half percent on Wednesday dragged by heavy selling across the board. All the major sectoral indices ended in the red with Realty, Metal, Auto and Banking falling the most. Key gauges made gap-down start and stayed in red terrain for whole day, as rising coronavirus cases in the country dampened the sentiments in the markets. India recorded 47,264 new cases, taking to tally to 11,733,594, according to Worldometer. The death toll from the deadly infection jumped to 160,477. India has the 7th highest number of active cases globally. Maharashtra recorded 28,699 new Covid-19 cases and 132 deaths. Sentiments remained down-beat with the IMF's managing director stating that prospects for a recovery from the COVID-induced economic slowdown are uncertain and uneven, with some emerging economies and almost all low-income countries at risk of lower growth. Traders also took a note of reports that Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman raised the limit for tax exemption on interest earned on provident fund contribution by employees to Rs 5 lakh per annum in specified cases as against Rs 2.5 lakh proposed in the Budget. Key indices extended losses in late afternoon deals, amid weak global cues. The impending expiry of futures and options monthly contracts on Thursday added further pressure on the markets. Traders overlooked Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs Anurag Thakur's statement that increased economic activities have resulted in higher GST collection which stood above Rs 1 lakh crore for five months in a row since October 2020. He said this could be possible on the back of the measures taken by the government to boost economic activities over the last year to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. Market participants also paid no heed towards survey by Nasscom stated that chief executive officers (CEO) of Indian technology companies are most optimistic about the global economy, with 97 per cent believing that 2021 will be better than the difficult year of 2020.  Finally, the BSE Sensex fell 871.13 points or 1.74% to 49,180.31, while the CNX Nifty was down by 265.35 points or 1.79% to 14,549.40.


The US markets ended lower on Wednesday, with Nasdaq dropping over two percent, on lingering concerns about the outlook for high-growth companies contributed to the sell-off by technology stocks, which have seen considerable volatility in recent sessions. Within the tech sector, shares of Intel (INTC) showed a substantial downturn on the day, slumping by 2.3 percent after spiking by 6.2 percent to its best intraday level in over a year in early trading. Further, investors remained concerned about Europe's recent struggles with limiting the spread of coronavirus. Germany reversed plans for a stricter lockdowns over the Easter holiday, but worries remain about a potentially slower economic recovery for the region, even as fresh economic data have provided a bright spot. On the economic data front, the Commerce Department released a report showing new orders for US manufactured durable goods unexpectedly decreased in the month of February. The Commerce Department said durable goods orders slumped by 1.1 percent in February after spiking by an upwardly revised 3.5 percent in January. The pullback came as a surprise to participants, who had expected durable goods orders to climb by 0.8 percent compared to the 3.4 percent jump that had been reported for the previous month. Excluding a steep drop in orders for transportation equipment, durable goods orders still fell by 0.9 percent in February after surging up by 1.6 percent in January. Street had expected a 0.6 percent increase.


Crude oil futures ended sharply higher on Wednesday after a ship that got struck in the Suez Canal raised concerns about possible supply disruptions. The MV Ever Given, a Panama-flagged container ship that carries trade between Asia and Europe, became grounded Tuesday in the narrow, man-made waterway dividing continental Africa from the Sinai Peninsula, threatening to disrupt a global shipping system already strained by the coronavirus pandemic. Meanwhile, Data released by the Energy Information Administration (EIA) showed US crude inventories increased by 1.9 million barrels in the week ended March 19 compared to an expected drop of 900,000 barrels. Crude oil futures for May rose $3.42 or about 5.9 percent to settle at $61.18 barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. May Brent crude gained $3.69 or 6 percent to settle at $64.48 a barrel on London's Intercontinental Exchange.


Indian rupee ended weaker against dollar on Wednesday with fresh dollar demand by banks and importers. Sentiments were under pressure amid fears that authorities may tighten restrictions further as covid-19 cases continue to surge. Also, weakness in domestic equity markets put pressure on Indian currency. Traders overlooked Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs Anurag Thakur's statement that increased economic activities have resulted in higher GST collection which stood above Rs 1 lakh crore for five months in a row since October 2020. On the global front, dollar hit a four-month high on Wednesday as concerns over a third COVID-19 wave in Europe, potential US tax hikes, and escalating tensions between the West and China sapped risk appetite. Finally, the rupee ended 72.55, weaker by 12 paise from its previous close of 72.43 on Tuesday.


The FIIs as per Wednesday's data were net seller in equity segment, while net buyer in debt segment. In equity segment, the gross buying was of Rs 7811.92 crore against gross selling of Rs 7841.38 crore, while in the debt segment, the gross purchase was of Rs 856.34 crore with gross sales of Rs 675.04 crore. Besides, in the hybrid segment, the gross buying was of Rs 26.67 crore against gross selling of Rs 25.06 crore.


The US markets ended lower on Wednesday led by declines in tech heavyweights like Facebook and Apple. Asian markets are trading mostly in green on Thursday though tech shares in the region took a hit following a sell-off in the sector overnight on Wall Street. Indian markets ended nearly two percent lower on Wednesday as selling intensified, dragged down by financial, auto and metal stocks amid weakness in global stocks. Today, the start of F&O series expiry session is likely to be flat-to-positive tacking gains in Asian peers. Traders will be taking encouragement as Fitch Ratings revised India's GDP growth estimate to 12.8 per cent for the fiscal year beginning April 1 from its previous estimate of 11 per cent, saying its recovery from the depths of the lockdown-induced recession has been swifter than expected. Some support will come as Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the Finance Bill 2021 has some amendments aimed at achieving a reduction in compliance and improving ease of doing business. Traders may take note of report that With COVID-19 cases on the rise again and reports of a new double mutant variant found, the government is likely to slow down its vaccine exports for the next two months. Besides, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said India enjoys an investment grade rating and she does not see a rating downgrade because of higher spending. However, rising coronavirus cases may dampen sentiments in the markets. India has registered 53,419 fresh cases of Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, taking to tally to 11,787,013, according to Worldometer. The death toll from the deadly infection jumped to 160,726. India has the 7th highest number of active cases globally. Maharashtra recorded a fresh peak of 31,855 - up from the previous high of 30,535 registered on March 21 - and state tally went up to 2,564,881 till date, three days after crossing the 2.50 million mark. There will be some reaction in power stocks as Power distribution companies (discoms) in 26 of India's 36 states and union territories (UT) have witnessed an increase in overdue since last year; with 30 territories having dues pending for more than two months. Meanwhile, two stocks will make debut today. The Rs 660 crore IPO of Laxmi Organics was subscribed 107 time in a price band of Rs 129-130 per share. Craftsman Automation was sold in the price range of Rs 1,488-1,490 per share and was subscribed 3.82 times. Market participants will also keep an eye on updates from today's board meeting of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi).


Support and Resistance: NSE (Nifty) and BSE (Sensex)



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  • Hero MotoCorp is planning to increase prices of its motorcycles and scooters by up to Rs 2,500 from next month in order to partially offset the impact of increase in commodity costs. 
  • Grasim Industries plans to raise funds by availing term loans or by issuing debt securities. 
  • Nestle India is introducing Munch Fruit O Nuts to expand its chocolate portfolio as consumers are increasingly seeking good-for-me ingredients. 
  • TCS has launched the TCS Connected Consumer Home solution based on RDK, to enable media and CSPs to offer intuitive and exciting connected consumer experiences.
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