Weak rupee, global cues drag Sensex 306 pts, Nifty below 10450; PSU banks see strong day

Mumbai, May 23: Equity benchmarks on Wednesday failed to cash in on positive close from the previous session as selling pressure dominated in the penultimate hours of trade. Weaker rupee as well as tepid global cues weighed in on sentiment on D-Street.
The day began on a flat note and traded rangebound through the day. However, a selloff in the post afternoon session brought about weakness in the equity benchmarks.
The Sensex closed lower by 306.33 points at 34344.91, while the Nifty was down 106.30 points at 10430.40. The market breadth was negative as 1,117 shares advanced against a decline of 1,515 shares, while 140 shares are unchanged.
Barring big gains in PSU banks, all sectoral indices managed to end the day in deep red, with maximum cuts visible in the energy space. The Nifty PSU bank index was up over 2 percent, largely on the back of a good surge in State Bank of India.
In the broader markets, midcaps had a weak day, but did not fall to the extent which benchmarks fell. The Nifty Midcap index ended over half a percent lower.
Among stocks, CEAT, PFC, MRPL, REC, Balrampur Chini Mills, SAIL, Motherson Sumi, JSPL, GMR Infrastructure and Union Bank declined up to 7 percent.
Public sector lender Andhra Bank share price surged over 5 percent even as it suffered Rs 2,636 crore loss for the quarter ended March 31 2018 due to higher provisioning for bad loans.
State Bank of India rose around 4 percent even as the bank reported a loss of Rs 7,700 crore for the quarter.
Sun Pharmaceuticals’ shares rose over a percent before ending the day on a flat note. The US drug regulator approved a product for treatment of prostate cancer.
Gravita India rose 2 percent as company signed a contract with Amara Raja Batteries for lead acid battery scrap collection and recycling arrangements.
L&T Technology Services gained over 3.5 percent as the company reported strong growth in its March quarter numbers.
HPCL, meanwhile, fell over 8 percent after the company posted 4% fall in Q4 net profit at Rs 1,759 crore
Share price of Jain Irrigation Systems saw some profit booking, ending around half a percent lower. The stock rose 1.5 percent intraday due to a project win worth Rs 240 crore from Vidarbha Irrigation Development Corporation Nagpur.
Vedanta was lower by 6 percent after the Madras High Court banned expansion of Sterlite Copper plant in Tuticorin. Violent protests in Thootukudi have dominated headlines, which have killed 12 people.
Healthcare Global Enterprises slipped nearly 3 percent as the company reported net loss in the quarter ended March 2018.
Bajaj Electricals share price rallied fell 6 percent off its highs and ended 3 percent after the firm reported profit at Rs 7.3 crore for March quarter, down 81 percent compared to year-ago due to one-time loss of Rs 89.4 crore.
GVK Power share price rallied 10 percent after the company reported profit at Rs 23.1 crore in March quarter 2018 against loss of Rs 205.8 crore in March quarter 2017.
Among global markets, European stocks are down around a percent amid uncertainty around Italian government and souring market sentiment over ongoing trade talks between the world’s two biggest economies.
Asian stocks closed lower after US President Donald Trump dissatisfied with the latest round of trade talks with China.
Brent crude futures fall below $79 a barrel on hopes that OPEC may raise supplies as early as June, although geopolitical risks remained.