Indian benchmark indices, Sensex and Nifty ended Tuesday’s volatile trade sharply lower as coronavirus-induced lockdown worries weighed on investor sentiment. Industry experts suggesting a lockdown and BCCI taking the decision to cancel IPL also played impacted risk appetite. On top of it, selling in index heavyweight shares such as Reliance Industries, HDFC Bank and HDFC further dragged indices.
The Sensex ended 435 points lower at 48,283 and the Nifty lost 127 points to settle at 14,507. Both small-caps and mid-caps traded in red for the day, losing 0.6 and 0.3 percent, respectively. Market breadth was in favour of declines and the advance-decline ratio stood at 2:3 at close.
On the Nifty50 index, SBI Life, BPCL, ONGC, Adani Ports, and Bajaj Finance were the top gainers and Tata Consumer, Cipla, Dr Reddy, Reliance, Divi’s Labs led the losses.
Among sectors, all except Nifty PSU Bank traded in the red. Nifty PSU Bank rose nearly 4 percent; PNB, Bank of Baroda, and Union Bank were the gainers. Nifty Pharma was the top losing index, losing over 2 percent. Cipla, Divi’s, Dr Reddy’s and Sun Pharma led the losses.
Nifty Bank plummeted 741 points from its highs as bankers made a request to the RBI to allow a moratorium for three months, especially to retain and MSME borrowers.
However, the share price of ICICI Bank gained nearly 2 percent in the early trading session, as the stock remained unaffected by RBI’s decision to impose a penalty of Rs 3 crore for violating rules.
In the last thirty minutes of trade, Sensex lost 150 points and Nifty dipped 159 points, dragged by selling in heavyweights like the oil-to-telecom-retail conglomerate Reliance Industries, banking major HDFC Bank and FMCG giant Hindustan Unilever.
Index heavyweight stock RIL declined over 2.33 percent and HDFC Bank also fell over 2 percent.
Tata Consumer was under pressure, losing nearly 2 percent, ahead of its earnings on May 6. Tata Chemicals also slipped nearly 10 percent after reporting lower-than-expected results.
Oil marketing companies gained as fuel prices were hiked after two months. BPCL rose as much as 2 percent in Tuesday’s session.
SBI Life Insurance Co. Ltd share price traded over 3 percent higher on Tuesday, hitting a new 52-week high price intra-day on positive fourth-quarter earnings.
Shares of Home First Finance surged over 7 percent to hit a high of Rs 525 on Tuesday, again on positive fourth-quarter earnings.
Shares of L&T Technology Services dropped over 8 percent to hit a low of Rs 2,557.80 on Tuesday even after the company reported decent results.