Sensex drops 350 points, tests 47,000 level: Key factors behind extended losses

Sensex drops 350 points, tests 47,000 level: Key factors behind extended losses

NEW DELHI: Bears continued to strengthen their grip on the market as they sold whatever they could get their hands on, sending benchmark indices lower for another day ahead of the Union Budget.

Foreign investors have decidedly turned negative on India withdrawing money from equities for the third day in a row. Traders are also unwinding their long positions in tandem, putting further pressure on the market.

“Markets, globally, have turned weak following the steady decline in the mother market US. The heightened speculative activity in certain segments in US markets have become an area of concern. Back home, in India, the third day of consecutive selling by FIIs have turned the market mood bearish. The budget uncertainty will keep the bulls in restraint,” said VK Vijayakumar, Chief Investment Strategist at Geojit Financial Services.

Factors driving markets:

  • Fed stands firm: The Federal Reserve on Wednesday raised concerns over US economic growth and left its key overnight interest rate near zero, and made no change to its monthly bond purchases, pledging again to keep those economic pillars in place until there is a full rebound from the pandemic-triggered recession.
  • Dollar rises: The US dollar rose as investors moved to safe havens amid sell-off on global markets. A rising dollar means movement of money from emerging markets like India.

How bluechips are doing

After opening in the red, benchmark indices pared some losses. At 9:51 am, BSE flagship Sensex was down 354 points or 0.75 per cent at 47,055. NSE benchmark Nifty followed, and dipped 112 points or 0.80 per cent to 13,855.

“The 13,900 objective discussed early this week should be achieved today. While there could be intermittent buying attempts today, they may be brief. A close above 14,100, or falls into the 13,330-12,660 region could however interest us into considering longs,” said a technical analyst at Geojit Financial Services.

In the 50-share pack Nifty, Axis Bank that came out with its earnings, was the biggest gainer, up 1.21 per cent. Reliance Industries, BPCL, ONGC, Hero Moto, NTPC and Bharti Airtel were among other gainers.

Tech Mahindra was the top loser in the pack, down 2.32 per cent. HDFC Bank, Power Grid, Sun Pharma, Kotak Mahindra Bank, UPL, Dr Reddy’s Labs and Tata Motors were other losers in the pack.

Broader markets

The broader market indices traded with cuts trading in line with their headline peers in morning deals. Nifty Smallcap dropped 0.51 per cent while Nifty Midcap slipped 0.42 per cent. The broadest index on NSE — the Nifty 500 — was down 0.60 per cent.

Future Retail, Vodafone Idea, Whirlpool, RVNL, Inox Leisure and Rashtriya Chemicals were among major gainers from the space, while Vakrangee, PNB Housing, India Cements, Canara Bank and Nalco were under selling pressure.

Global markets
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 1.2 per cent, with valuations looking stretched given the index had risen more than 6 per cent just this month.

Japan’s Nikkei fell 1.3 per cent, its sharpest drop since October, and Chinese blue chips 1.5 per cent. South Korea eased 0.9 per cent led by losses in Samsung after it reported earnings.

There was a hint of resilience in Asia as US stock futures pared steep early losses, leaving Eminis for the S&P 500 off 0.1 per cent and NASDAQ futures down 0.2 per cent.

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