The week that was: RIL’s worst since March, IIFL Finance’s best since 2014

The week that was: RIL’s worst since March, IIFL Finance’s best since 2014

MUMBAI: The week that has gone by was a tough one even for the optimists on Dalal Street as the benchmark equity indices registered their biggest weekly losses in more than eight months. The Nifty 50 index tanked 5.1 per cent, while the BSE-Sensex took a knock of 5.3 per cent.

The selling was driven by foreign portfolio investors, who on Friday alone net sold local stocks worth Rs. 5,930 crore – the highest single-day selling since March.

Investors were seen taking profits after the stupendous rally over the past few months that drove benchmark indices to their lifetime highs. Concerns over the Budget announcements amid reports of likely new cess on corporates and ultra high net-worth individuals also sapped the spirits of the bulls on the Street.

The selling was also complemented by higher participation as average daily cash segment turnover on the National Stock Exchange was 3 per cent higher over the previous week’s at Rs 75,197 crore.

“In fact, it is the weaker bets that have moved out of the markets before the high volatility on Budget Day. A bold budget might rejuvenate the benchmark indices and keep the exuberance going,” said Nirali Shah, senior research analyst at Samco Securities in a note.

Here are the 10 stocks that defined the week’s action:

RIL’s worst week since March

The Street was not impressed by the December quarter earnings of the country’s largest conglomerate given that its net profit beat was driven by higher other income and lower taxes. The conspicuous absence of some key earnings metrics from the disclosure also irked investors. As a result, the stock tanked a little over 10 per cent.

Grasim stock rejoices on paints foray

The Aditya Birla Group company’s surprise announcement of a foray into the paint industry with an outlay of Rs. 5,000 crore sent the company’s stock rising over 5 per cent this week. Investors were relieved that the company chose not to invest more in Vodafone Idea, and instead will invest in a lucrative business-to-consumer business.


Grasim’s paints adventure sent a wave of anxiety among investors of India’s largest listed paints company as they were concerned that the rising competitive intensity in the sector could take its toll on Asian Paints “blue sky” valuations. The stock fell 7 per cent for the week.

Berger Paints tanks

Grasim has set its sights on becoming the second largest player in the organised decorative paints segment – the place held by Berger Paints currently. Investors were not pleased by the heat of competition that awaits the company and took some profits. The stock tanked 9 per cent.

Maruti Suzuki feels the cost pinch

Shares of the country’s largest passenger car maker slumped 10.5 per cent during the week, their biggest weekly losses since May. The company reported lower-than-expected operating margin for the December quarter and said that higher input costs and unfavourable revenue mix is weighing on profitability.

Tata Steel’s debt problems make a comeback

Shares of the steelmaker declined 7 per cent this week after SSAB pulled the plug on negotiations to buy out the former’s Netherlands plant. The deal could have been an instant boost for Tata Steel, which is looking to pare down debt as soon as possible. However, with another potential buyer backing out, concerns around the company’s debt are back on the table.

HUL struggles with volume recovery

Investors were not pleased with the struggles of the country’s largest fast-moving consumer goods company in boosting its volumes even as its peers are doing much better. The company reported organic volume growth of 4 per cent in the December quarter but at the same time, its rivals like Jyothy Laboratories registered 15 per cent growth. The stock fell 6 per cent.

IIFL Finance jumps on strong earnings

Shares of the company surged 24 per cent this past week, their best week since May 2014, with majority of the gains coming on Friday as investors were impressed by the company’s 47 per cent year-on-year growth in consolidated net profit and a Rs. 3 per share interim dividend.

Biocon slumps on growth concerns

Investors’ outlook on Biocon has swung wildly to the pessimistic as the company’s weak December quarter earnings and the sudden exit of the head of the biosimilars business have dented confidence. As a consequence, shares of the company fell 6 per cent.

Shriram Transport soars on growth hope

While questions hang over Biocon’s growth, investors are increasingly optimistic about

’s prospects given the solid recovery that the country’s commercial vehicles segment is witnessing. Shares of the company rose 12 per cent.

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