Markets extend losses; Sensex tanks over 300 points

Markets are still reeling under pressure weighed down by pressure from across the board. The Budget session of the Parliament begins amid the on-going political controversies where the investors await the fate of crucial bills such as GST.

At 1 pm, the S&P BSE Sensex was down 340 points at 23,449 and the Nifty50 was down 112 points at 7,123.

The market breadth is extremely weak with 1,680 declines against the 625 advances on the BSE.

However, amid signs of a stormy Parliament session ahead, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today hoped the Budget Session will be fruitful and utilised for constructive debate, adding “friends” from opposition parties had shown “positive” attitude during various interactions.

In the commodity space, oil prices dipped slightly today after posting strong gains the previous session on the back of an expected drop in US production, but which analysts expect to be countered by rising output from Iran.

KEY STOCKS

All 30 stocks from the Sensex pack are trading in red with BSE Bankex down by 2.5%.

At the onset of the Budget session of the Parliament, the banking and financial shares have come under pressure. SBI, ICICI Bank, Axis Bank, are all down between 2%-3%.

Shares of Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC) has dipped 1.7% to Rs 1,040, its lowest level since November 2014 on BSE, on back of heavy volumes.

ITC continues to remain under pressure and was down 1.5% on worries over excise duty hike on cigarettes in the forthcoming Budget.

NTPC was down 2.1%. The government will divest 5% stake in the power giant through the Offer for Sale (OFS) route on Tuesday, as part of the 2015-16 disinvestment plan. It has fixed the base price at Rs 122 a share.

Prominent losers in the Sensex pack include HUL, Bajaj Auto, Cipla, Lupin down up to 2.4%. On the other hand, Dr Reddy’s Lab, ONGC, Tata Steel and Sun Pharma trading higher up to 1%.

Among other shares, shares of Richa Industries were up nearly 3% at Rs 30.50 on the BSE after the company announced that it has secured an order worth Rs 23 crore from IRCON International Ltd, a government company incorporated by the Ministry of Railways.

Mahindra CIE Automotive has dipped 12% to Rs 169, also its 52-week low on the BSE, after the company reported a sharp 65% year on year (yoy) drop in its consolidated net profit at Rs 148 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2015 (Q3FY16). The company had registered a profit of Rs 424 crore in the same quarter last year.