Budget 2024: Market today - Sensex opens flat, Nifty falls down to 21,710

Budget 2024: On the day of Union Budget announcement, the Sensex stock market index opened flat, unchanged at 71,760 points. The Nifty index also opened steady, nearing 21,730 points.

Shantanu Poswal
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Budget 2024: Indian shares treaded water in early trade on Thursday as investors held their breath ahead of the interim budget announcement. The benchmark Nifty 50 index hovered near the flatline, while the Sensex scratched out minor gains in muted trade.

All eyes were on Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, who was slated to rise in parliament at 11 AM to deliver the budget for fiscal year 2024/25. Market participants were eager to see whether the finance ministry would unveil any surprises that could impact equities.

"There is a sense of cautious optimism pervading trading floors this morning," said by a market analyst. "Investors seem to be taking a wait-and-see approach given the importance of today's budget address."

Meanwhile, shares of financial technology firm Paytm plunged 20% in morning deals after the Reserve Bank of India ordered its payments bank unit to stop taking on new customers and credit card transactions. The central bank said its action was due to "certain supervisory concerns" at the company.

Paytm's wild ride lower weighed heavily on market sentiment. The company has struggled since a lacklustre IPO in 2021 and its market cap has shrivelled dramatically from once over $20 billion to now under $5 billion.