Sensex hits record high ahead of Q3 results, US-China trade deal

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New Delhi: Quarterly earnings, inflation data and the much-awaited US-China trade deal signing has brought about a promising start to the equity markets this week.

The Sensex and Nifty vaulted to record highs on Monday as investors scooped up tech, banking and metal stocks amid a rally in global markets in anticipation of the US-China trade deal.

After rallying nearly 300 points to its record intra-day high of 41,899.63, the 30-share BSE Sensex settled 259.97 points, or 0.62 per cent, up at its new closing peak of 41,859.69.

Likewise, the broader Nifty scaled its lifetime (intra-day) high of 12,337.75, before ending 72.75 points, or 0.59 per cent, higher at 12,329.55 -- its fresh closing record.

Infosys was the top gainer in the Sensex pack, spurting 4.76 per cent, after the IT services major on Friday reported a 23.7 per cent rise in consolidated net profit at Rs 4,466 crore for the December quarter.

Infosys shares reacted positively on Monday after the company's audit committee gave a clean chit to the management on allegations of misconduct.

Infosys on Friday said the board's audit committee has completed the independent probe into the anonymous whistleblower allegations and found "no evidence" of financial impropriety or executive misconduct.

IndusInd Bank, Bharti Airtel, HUL, M&M, Tata Steel, PowerGrid and Tech Mahindra too ended with gains of up to 3.34 per cent.

On the other hand, TCS, SBI, Bajaj Auto, ICICI Bank, RIL, Axis Bank and Nestle India shed up to 1.03 per cent.

"Market wants to look forward where Q3 earnings and pre-Budget movement will be the theme of this week. In terms of earnings, Wipro, IndusInd Bank, Reliance Industries, HCL Technologies and HDFC Bank will be key companies that will post their Q3 results this week," said Santosh Meena, Senior Research Analyst, TradingBells.

Among macroeconomic data announcements, retail and WPI inflation numbers will be released on Monday and Tuesday, respectively.

On the global front, with US-Iran tensions cooling off, focus will largely shift to the upcoming US-China trade deal signing.

Kotak Mahindra Asset Management Company, Senior VP and Head of Equity Research, Shibani Kurian said, "From here on, the equity markets would focus on the upcoming Union Budget and also RBI policy at the start of February. Markets would also take cues from the Q3 FY20 earnings season with key focus being on management commentary on business outlook."

Markets on Monday also reacted to industrial production data which was announced post market hours on Friday.

The country's industrial output grew 1.8 per cent in November, turning positive after three months of contraction, on account of growth in the manufacturing sector.

"Markets are heading for testing times given that the result season has set in and Budget parleys too will have to be digested in weeks to come. Volatility is expected to increase, although prices are not expected to move much till Budget. However, sector specific rallies are likely to continue," Jimeet Modi, Founder & CEO, SAMCO Securities & StockNote said.

During the last week, the Sensex advanced 135.11 points or 0.32 per cent.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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