Considering the downbeat mood on Dalal Street, the August futures and options (F&O) series was expected to see a sombre start. During the July series expiry week, investor sentiment took a beating due to disappointing quarterly corporate results, the International Monetary Fund lowering India’s growth outlook, and the government’s refusal rollback the surcharge on tax for super rich which includes foreign investors.

Technical analysts said a subdued start to the August series was on cards. Given the domestic and global concerns, market participants chose to sell at higher levels. As a result, rollovers going into the August series declined.

“During the major part of July series, we hardly saw any relevant build-up in index futures; however, good amount of shorting was seen in the expiry week. Stronger hands continued their selling streak for the third consecutive month. We are beginning the series (August) with lower base and good amount of short rollovers in majority of individual counters," Sneha Seth, derivatives analyst, Angel Broking Ltd said in a note.

Chandan Taparia, derivatives analyst at Motilal Oswal Financial Services Ltd said key Nifty levels to watch out for in the August series would be 11,200-11,500.

Surprisingly, despite weak investor sentiment and poor Nifty returns, the fear gauge NSE India volatility index fell more than 3% during the week.

Meanwhile, the European Central Bank, which kept interest rates unchanged, said expects rates to stay at present or lower levels through mid-2020. Thus, opening doors for an interest rate cut.

In the week ahead, key triggers for global markets include monetary policy meetings of the Bank of Japan and more importantly the US Federal Reserve. Back home, Axis Bank, Ashok Leyland, Bharti Airtel, Eicher Motors, ITC, HDFC Ltd and Tech Mahindra are some of key earnings to watch out for.

Further, investors will be closely tracking a slew of macro-economic data including June fiscal deficit numbers, Indian Purchase Managers’ Index survey for July and foreign exchange reserves data.