Indian stock markets started on a negative note with Sensex falling nearly 150 points and Nifty dropping below 10,350 as shares of HDFC Bank, HDFC, Reliance Industries, Maruti Suzuki and State Bank of India slid in red contributing heavily to the index losses. Shares of Sun Pharma recovered some of its losses emerging as the top gainer among the Sensex components. The benchmark Sensex lost as much as 144.23 points to hit the day’s low of 33,700.63 whereas the broader Nifty 50 fell below 10,350-level shedding 56.8 points to mark the day’s low at 10,340.65. Shares of the fraud-hit Punjab National Bank also dived nearly 3% in the early morning trades.
Shares of TCS, Sun Pharma, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Wipro, and Infosys were the only gainers among the Sensex constituents while the stocks of ONGC, Bharti Airtel, Asian Paints, Maruti Suzuki, Tata Motors, M&M, Axis Bank and State Bank of India lost up to 2%. The S&P BSE Sensex sank 27.77 points or 0.08% to start the day at 33,817.09 while NSE Nifty began at 10,354.35 down by 43.1 points or 0.41%.
Shares of PNB fell as much as 2.9% to a day’s low of Rs 113.7 on BSE while the stock of Gitanjali Gems slipped 5% to a fresh 52-week low of Rs 26.1 on BSE. The stock of Gitanjali Gems had been on a continuous falling trend since the day when India’s second-largest PSU bank PNB found unauthorised transactions involving fake LOUs. The jewellery firm Gitanjali Gems was reportedly under the scanner of investigative agencies after it was also named in unlawful practices along with the alleged diamond merchant Nirav Modi.
Among the ‘A’ group of shares on BSE, the stock of Vakrangee was the top loser followed by Religare Enterprises, Sun TV and PC Jeweller while the stocks of Gruh Finance, Persistent System and L&T Infotech were the top gainers. Among the broader and sectoral indices of NSE, all the indices were trading in negative territory barring Nifty IT index.
US stocks closed lower on Wednesday in a rocky session after the release of the minutes from the Federal Reserve’s January meeting pushed yields on the benchmark 10-year US Treasury note to a four-year high, Reuters reported. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 166.97 points or 0.67% to 24,797.78, the S&P 500 lost 14.93 points or 0.55% to 2,701.33 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 16.08 points or 0.22% to 7,218.23.