Markets React to NDA's Narrow Win in 2024 Lok Sabha Elections

Following the 2024 elections, the Indian stock market saw dramatic declines. Explore the reasons and strategic investment advice in the wake of the NDA's narrow win.

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The stock market's dramatic shift this week left investors reeling. What began as a wave of optimism following Monday’s predictions turned into widespread panic by Tuesday. The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) coalition's narrower-than-expected win triggered a massive market selloff, with both the Nifty and Sensex plunging around 6%. This marked the steepest single-day decline since the COVID-19 crash in March 2020.

Stock Market Today: Nifty and Sensex Tumble

The Nifty ended the day down by 1,379 points at 21,884.50, having hit an intraday low of 21,281. The Sensex dropped 4,390 points, closing at 72,079.05 after reaching a low of 70,234 during the day. Mid-cap and small-cap indices faced even sharper declines, plummeting by 6-7%.

Volatility Surge and Sector-Wide Impact

As vote counting progressed, market volatility soared. The India VIX shot up by 50% to over 31 points, the sharpest rise in nearly a decade. Almost every sector, except FMCG, ended in the red. Financials, real estate, and PSUs were particularly hard hit, with Adani Group stocks among the worst affected. PSU stocks like SAIL, BEL, HAL, PFC, REC, CONCOR, NALCO, and BHEL saw declines of up to 25% in a single day.

Economic Outlook and Opportunities Amidst Political Shifts

India's overall economic indicators remain strong. Factors such as inflation, interest rates, tax collections, and GDP growth all align favourably, suggesting resilience and potential for long-term growth. Historical data also shows that India’s economy has successfully prospered under various political structures, including coalition governments.

Historically, markets that experience exceptionally high returns typically undergo a period of consolidation to adjust earnings and valuations. However, this does not imply a loss of India's growth momentum. Anuj Bajpai, Cofounder & CEO of Liquide, had previously warned investors about market valuations. “Currently, the NIFTY50 is trading above its 1-year average at around 22.7 times earnings, suggesting overvaluation and warranting caution,” he noted. Bajpai also predicted that 2024 returns might not match the spectacular gains of 2023. Read the full article here

Currently, the market offers the chance to invest in the Indian narrative at more appealing valuations than before. 

Market Projections and Sectoral Opportunities

Looking forward, India offers significant wealth creation opportunities over the next 3-5 years, especially in capital-intensive sectors. Attention is growing towards rural distress and the broader mass consumption market. Furthermore, an NDA-led government is expected to maintain its focus on infrastructure development. The BJP manifesto emphasized priorities like farmer welfare, health improvements, quality of life enhancements, clean energy transitions, and the expansion of manufacturing and infrastructure.

The pronounced sell-off in PSU stocks signals a correction phase where the market seems to be clearing the speculative froth that had built up in these stocks. For instance, Bharat Electronics, which traded at a forward earnings multiple of 13 times in 2019, escalated to 43 times. Similarly, companies in the power and utilities sectors have also seen considerable re-ratings. Such a correction was to be anticipated, as also discussed in our previous article: Historic Day For Nifty, Sensex Post Exit Polls: What To Expect Tomorrow?

However, it’s important to note that power generation is nearing optimal levels and the demand for power producers is unlikely to wane anytime soon. Investors should focus on stock valuations during these times. Sharp declines like these provide a chance to acquire quality stocks at lower prices for long-term gains.

Conclusion: Strategic Investment in a Volatile Market

The post-election market scenario, though turbulent, opens avenues for strategic investments. Investors should focus on long-term growth potential and sectoral recovery. While the market adjusts to political realities, India's strong economic fundamentals suggest a solid foundation for growth and investment potential.

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