The upcoming quarterly results season, along with the release of macro-economic industrial production data and global developments on trade protectionist measures, are expected to determine the trajectory of key equity indices next week.
Market observers opined that other global cues such as crude oil prices, combined with the direction of foreign fund flows and the rupee's movement against the US dollar, will also have a bearing on the risk-taking appetite of investors.
"Investors have turned cautious ahead of corporate earnings season beginning next week, with TCS and Infosys reporting December quarter results in the first round. Going forward, the market is expected to continue its volatile trade," SMC Investments & Advisors CMD D.K. Aggarwal said.
"Besides, developments in the Winter Session of Parliament, the movement of rupee against the dollar and crude oil price movement will further give direction to the market." (The Winter Session will run for just two more days on Monday and Tuesday.)
The Q3 earnings result season will kick-off from next week. IT major TCS is expected to be the first bluechip firm to come out with its Q3 result on January 10 (Thursday).
"The ongoing volatility may continue in the near-term, due to premium valuation, slowdown in the domestic economy, muted earnings growth in the next two quarters and cascading effect of liquidity crunch in the urban and rural markets," Geojit Financial Services Head of Research Vinod Nair said.
"Additionally, the short-term effect of the national election (in the next few months), with risk of populist measures and the global effect of current uncertainties may add to the near term volatility. Markets will look forward to US-China trade talks and Q3 results season starting next week."
Apart from TCS, companies like Infosys, Bajaj Corp and IndusInd Bank are expected to announce their quarterly results in the coming week.
Besides Q3 results, investors will look out for the upcoming macro-economic data points such as the IIP (Index of Industrial Production).
The Central Statistics Office (CSO) is slated to release the macro-economic data points of IIP and CPI on January 11 (Friday).
On the currency front, the rupee is expected to be volatile as crude and bond yields indicate pressure on the local currency said Sajal Gupta, Edelweiss Securities' Head of Forex and Rates.
"Liquidity expansion in China can also put pressure on Asian currencies in the near future.. and global slowdown worries are not moving away...."
The local currency strengthened during the week ended January 4. It gained 43 paise to 69.72 against the US dollar from its previous week's close of 70.15.
Another key theme for next week will be the direction of foreign fund flows. On a weekly basis, provisional figures from the stock exchanges showed that FIIs sold stocks worth over Rs 2,000 crore in the week just ended.
On technical levels, the underlying trend of the National Stock Exchange's Nifty50 has turned flat.
"Technically, with the moving average and momentum readings turning flat and the Nifty stuck in a range, markets could continue to remain choppy and range-bound in the coming week," said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research for HDFC Securities.
"The Nifty could broadly trade between the 10,534-10,924 points levels in the coming week."
Last week, the Indian equity market ended lower as concerns over a global slowdown and weak domestic core industrial production data dented investors sentiments.
Consequently, the 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange edged lower by 381.62 points, or 1.05 per cent, to close at 35,695.10 points.
Similarly, the Nifty50 of the NSE declined. It went down by 132.55 points, or 1.22 per cent, to settle at 10,727.35 points.