Equity benchmarks the Sensex and the Nifty managed to end in the green on March 16 after five consecutive sessions of losses, tracking mixed global cues.
Equity barometer Sensex traded volatile throughout the session as concerns over a widespread banking crisis mounted.
After the US, the banking storm hit Europe.
Shares of a major European bank Credit Suisse crashed in the previous session due to liquidity concerns. However, shares of the bank rose today after it said it secured a loan from the Swiss National Bank.
Eyes are now fixed on European Central Bank's rate decision today.
There was an expectation of a half-percentage-point increase before the Credit Suisse episode. Now, some analysts anticipate a small increase or no increase at all.
Sensex opened 45 points lower at 57,510.80 and swung 729 points in trade to hit the intraday high and low of 57,887.46 and 57,158.69 respectively.
The index closed 79 points, or 0.14 percent, higher at 57,634.84 while the Nifty closed at 16,985.60, up 13 points, or 0.08 percent.
Mid and smallcaps underperformed as the BSE Midcap index slipped 0.05 percent while the Smallcap index ended with a loss of 0.69 percent.
The benchmarks ended higher on gains in select heavyweight stocks, such as Hindustan Unilever, HDFC Bank, Asian Paints, SBI and Axis Bank.
The undertone of the market remained weak which was reflected by the number of stocks hitting their 52-week lows.
As many as 370 stocks, including Reliance Industries, Wipro, Mphasis, Bandhan Bank, Tata Consumer Products, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company, ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company, HDFC Life Insurance Company and Crompton Greaves Consumer Electricals, hit their 52-week lows in intraday trade on BSE.
Among the 3,640 stocks traded on BSE, 1,387 advanced and 2,139 declined while 114 stocks remained unchanged.
Crude oil prices rose after falling to 15-month lows in the previous session. Brent Crude traded over a percent higher near the $75 per barrel mark.
The rupee fell 13 paise to close at 82.74 per dollar, Bloomberg data showed.
Top Nifty gainers: Shares of BPCL, Hindustan Unilever and Asian Paints ended as the top gainers in the Nifty index, rising between six percent to two and a half percent.
32 stocks ended in the green and 18 stocks ended in the red in the Nifty50 index.
Top Nifty losers: Shares of Hindalco, Tata Steel and IndusInd Bank ended as the top losers in the Nifty pack, falling between five percent to two percent.
Most sectoral indices gained, with Nifty Media surging 4.16 percent. Nifty FMCG and Realty rose over a percent each.
Nifty Bank ended 0.21 percent higher.
On the flip side, Nifty Metal plunged 2.58 percent and Nifty IT fell 0.69 percent.
Experts' views on markets
Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services pointed out that with the turbulence at Credit Suisse and ahead of the ECB policy announcement, investors' attention has switched to developments in the European market.
Nair added that consistently unfavourable signs in global markets are encouraging investors to move to safe havens such as the dollar and gold, while FIIs are withdrawing funds from the domestic market in response to the Indian rupee's depreciation.
"Though the SVB & Credit Suisse crisis has eased, the market lacks the confidence to hold positions on contagion fears," said Nair.
Siddhartha Khemka, Head of Retail Research at Motilal Oswal Financial Services said fresh concern over Credit Suisse's failure has aggravated fears with regard to how deep-rooted the banking crisis can get going ahead. Its ripple effect is seen across global markets including India.
Khemka expects weakness to continue in the near term ahead of the ECB meeting outcome today and the Fed outcome next week. The commentary over the ongoing turmoil in the financial sector would be crucial for the markets, he said.
Technical view on markets
Jatin Gedia, Technical Research Analyst at Sharekhan by BNP Paribas observed that Nifty took support at the lower end of the downward-sloping channel and bounced back with a long lower shadow indicating buying interest at lower levels.
Gedia underscored that the positive divergence and positive crossover on the hourly charts suggest that the bounce can continue over the next few trading sessions.
"Considering that the Nifty has corrected about 1,000 points in the last six trading sessions, it is appearing oversold and hence a relief rally appears highly probable over the next few trading sessions. On the upside, the immediate hurdle stands at the 17,170–17,200 zone where resistance in the form of the hourly upper Bollinger band and the 40-hour exponential moving average is placed," said Gedia.
Key market data
Disclaimer: The views and recommendations given in this article are those of individual analysts. These do not represent the views of MintGenie.