Sensex Plunges 981 Points Nifty Settles Near 17,800 Amid Negative Global Cues PSU Bank Index Tumbles 6% Stock Market

The two key equity benchmarks, Sensex and Nifty, on Friday dived sharply tracking negative global sentiment as Covid-19 scare in China triggered slowdown fears. With Friday’s fall, the India equity markets have settled lower for a fourth straight day.

The S&P BSE Sensex tanked 981 points (1.6 per cent) to end at 59,845, which is its lowest level since October 28. On the other hand, the Nifty50 closed at 17,807, down 321 points (1.8 per cent). The index sunk to a low of 17,779 during the day.

On the 30-share Sensex platform, Tata Steel, Tata Motors, SBI, Bajaj Finserv, Wipro, IndusInd Bank, Reliance, L&T shed 2-5 per cent. On the flip side, only Titan was sole gainer.

The overall breadth of the 30-share Sensex pack stood negative as 29 scrips declined while one advanced.

In the broader markets, the BSE MidCap and SmallCap indices fell 3 and 4 per cent, respectively.

The broad-based selling was led by public sector banks with the Nifty PSU Bank index tumbling nearly 6 per cent. This was followed by the Nifty Metal index (down over 4 per cent), and the Nifty Realty index (down 3 per cent).

On Friday alone, investors were left poorer by Rs 5.5 lakh crore, as the BSE market capitalisation (MCap) declined to Rs 275.01 lakh crore from Rs 280.55 crore in the previous session.

In the previous session on Thursday, the S&P BSE Sensex declined 241 points to end at 60,826 levels in a broad-based sell-off. The Nifty50 gave up the 18,150-mark to close at 18,127, down 72 points.

Meanwhile, the rupee declined by 7 paise to close at 82.86 (provisional) against the US dollar on Friday due to firm crude oil prices and steep losses in domestic stocks amid growing concerns about interest rate hikes. A weak greenback in the global markets restricted the local unit’s losses, forex dealers said.

At the interbank foreign exchange market, the rupee opened marginally down at 82.81 against its previous close of 82.79. It moved in a range of 82.77 to 82.88 in the day’s trade. The rupee finally finished at 82.86 against the US dollar, showing a loss of 7 paise over its last close.

Brent crude oil, the pricing basis for international trading, advanced 2 per cent to $82.61 per barrel on expectations of lower Russian crude exports from the Baltic region in December.

Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) turned net buyers in the capital markets on Thursday as they bought shares worth Rs 928.63 crore, according to exchange data.