Indian shares slip on year-end profit booking; Nifty set for 13% jump in 2019

Reuters Mumbai, India Dec 31, 2019, 03.03 PM(IST)

File photo: A man walks past the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building in Mumbai. Photograph:( Reuters )

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The Nifty 50 last hit an intraday record high of 12,293.90 on December 20.

Indian stocks slipped on Tuesday but hovered around their all-time highs as investors booked year-end profits, while the benchmark Nifty index was poised for a nearly 13 per cent gain in 2019.

On the last trading day of the year, the NSE Nifty 50 index was down 0.36 per cent at 12,211.60 by 0445 GMT, while the S&P BSE Sensex was trading 0.38 per cent lower at 41,401.35.

The Nifty has risen 12.5 per cent so far this year, while the Sensex has climbed 14.8 per cent. Both blue-chip indexes hit fresh record highs this year and have gained sharply more than in 2018, even as economic growth slipped to a five-year low this year amid a slowdown in demand for everything from cars to cookies.

Still, the gap between large-cap shares and their smaller peers was stark. The BSE MidCap index has shed 3 per cent this year, while the BSE SmallCap index is down 7 per cent.

Asian equities also slipped on Tuesday, mirroring declines on Wall Street, as investors locked in gains made since the United States and China deal this month.

The Nifty Bank index and the Nifty PSU Bank index, which have each rallied roughly 17 per cent since early October, were down 0.40 per cent and 0.33 per cent, respectively.

Twelve of the 13 stocks on the Nifty PSU Bank index, which tracks state-run lenders, were in the red. Indian Overseas Bank fell 2.1 per cent.

The Nifty Auto index, which has climbed 23 per cent from a record low in July, was down 0.40 per cent. The index still lost 10 per cent this year as automakers battled a crippling slowdown that forced them to cut production and jobs.

"When the market is near an all-time high, there's a probability of a correction ... we are seeing that today," said Siddharth Sedani, head of equity advisory at Anand Rathi Financial Services Ltd in Mumbai.

The Nifty 50 last hit an intraday record high of 12,293.90 on December 20.