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IT stocks drag BSE Sensex, NSE Nifty into red; Economic Survey, Budget session eyed

The BSE Sensex and National Stock Exchange’s Nifty were both trading in the red in early morning session as concerns over H1-B visas used by IT companies grew after a draft of Donald Trump’s executive order was leaked. The Budget session and the release of the Economic Survey document was also in focus today.

The 30-share Sensex was trading down 0.48% or 134.22 points lower at 27,715.34 while the 50-share Nifty was trading at 8,594.60, down 38.15 or 0.44%.

Image Source: Moneycontrol’s Nifty live data

According to a leaked draft of an executive order that the US President is likely to sign soon, the H1-B visa system is likely to be overhauled along with L1 visas used by most of the technology and IT professionals from overseas who work in the US. The executive order also promises to do away with employee authorisation cards from the spouses of H1-B, L1 visa holders, taking away their permit to work in the country.

While most IT companies in the country have maintained a wait-and-watch stance, the leaked document widens the scope of tougher times to come for those doing business in the US and the technology companies in the country hiring outside talent.

On reports of the leaked executive order, Infosys was trading at Rs 934.50 apiece, down Rs 13.85 or 1.46%, Wipro at Rs 460.40, down Rs 4.25 or 0.91%, Tech Mahindra at Rs 468.50, down Rs 3.20 or 0.68%, Tata Consultancy Services at Rs 2,300.70, down Rs 33.5 or 1.44%.

Markets were also trading in the red ahead of the Budget session that is scheduled to start on Tuesday, a day before Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announces the Union Budget 2017. The Economic Survey prepared by Chief Economic Advisor Arvind Subramanian will be released today and investors will have all eyes on it for cues on GDP growth estimations, comments on demonetization, black money, other macroeconomic growth indicators, and more.