Reversing their five-month buying trend, overseas investors have pressed the exit button in July and pulled out a net Rs 3,758 crore from the Indian capital markets on account of multiple headwinds, including the super-rich tax announced in Budget 2019-20. As per the latest depositories data, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) pulled out a net sum of Rs 14,382.59 from equities during July 1-26, but invested Rs 10,624.15 crore in the debt segment, taking the total net outflow to Rs 3,758.44 crore.
Prior to this, FPIs infused a net Rs 10,384.54 crore in June, Rs 9,031.15 crore in May, Rs 16,093 crore in April, Rs 45,981 crore in March and Rs 11,182 crore in February into the Indian capital markets (both equity and debt).
In the equity segment, "FPIs have been on a selling spree since the announcement of super-rich tax ... in the Union Budget for 2019-20," said Himanshu Srivastava, senior analyst manager research at Morningstar.
Expressing similar views, V K Vijayakumar, chief investment strategist at Geojit Financial Services, said "The sentiments have been impacted by the higher tax on FPIs registered as trusts and association of persons. However, the main reason for the selling is the sharp slowdown in the economy particularly in segments like autos. Besides, the second-quarter results from corporates have not been reassuring."
In addition, sub-par monsoon in key areas, lacklustre earnings season, slowing domestic growth and weak rupee added to the concerns of FPIs, he added. On the other hand, inflow in debt markets was witnessed amidst re-emergence of growth concerns globally, due to which central banks around the world softened their monetary policy stance.
"Hence, the yields in some countries are ultra-low or even negative while India, with relatively higher yield, is one of the best options available to FPIs for fixed-income investments," Srivastava noted.Going ahead, the flows into Indian equities would be largely driven by the growth trajectory of the Indian economy along with policies and reform measures undertaken by the government, Srivastava said.