Sensex Posts Biggest Drop in Three Weeks, Ends 253 Points Lower

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The Sensex posted its biggest drop in three weeks and Nifty settled below its crucial psychological level of 7,500 on the back of weak global cues.

Asian stocks fell on Tuesday after the Bank of Japan painted a gloomier view of the world’s third-largest economy, but the yen firmed as policymakers appeared to back away from any imminent move to cut interest rates further into negative territory.

Back home, the benchmark indices traded in the red for the most part of the day owing to losses in HDFC, ITC and Lupin.

From the Nifty-50 basket of stocks, 34 stocks ended lower while 16 ended higher.

Lupin was the top loser in the Nifty, the stock slumped 7.8 per cent to Rs 1,722.90 on reports that the USFDA made 8-9 observations on the drugmaker’s plant in Goa.

HDFC fell 4 per cent to Rs 1,111 after international brokerage Goldman Sachs downgraded the stock to ‘sell’ from ‘neutral’ for target price of Rs 990 saying structural changes will dampen profitability and HDFC’s core business is likely to be pressured.

ITC, Dr Reddy’s Labs, Zee Entertainment, Cipla, Sun Pharma, Idea Cellular, HCL Tech and HUL were also among the laggards.

On the other hand, State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Tata Steel, PNB, Yes Bank, Bosch and Bharti Airtel were among the gainers.

On the sectoral front, pharma and FMCG stocks were among the worst hit while banking and oil & gas stocks witnessed buying interest.

The broader markets also ended lower. The BSE mid-cap and small-cap indices fell 0.8 and 0.6 per cent each respectively.

The Sensex finally closed 253 points lower at 24,551 and Nifty declined 78 points to settle at 7,460.

3:20 p.m.: From the Nifty-50 basket of shares, 33 stocks were declining while 17 were declining.

Lupin was the top loser, the stock slumped 7.8 per cent to Rs 1,723. HDFC, Dr Reddy’s Labs, Zee Entertainment, ITC, Cipla, Sun Pharma and Idea Cellular were also among the losers, down 2-4 per cent each.

3:00 p.m.: Market breadth remains bearish as 1,653 stocks fall while 901 advance.

2:35 p.m.: Indian markets are trading at 17 times price to earnings ratio which leaves less room for upside, says market expert Anand Tondon.

2:17 p.m.: The European stock markets are trading on a weak note. Germany’s DAX was down 0.56 per cent, French CAC40 index fell 0.62 per cent and Britain’s FTSE 100 slipped 0.62 per cent.

1:46 p.m.: The BSE Sensex and Nifty have rallied 7-8 per cent since the Union Budget was announced on February 29. Analysts have attributed the rally to extreme pessimism ahead of the Budget and to global factors, in particular, the surprising rally in commodities.

Going ahead, domestic factors will play a key role in deciding the direction of Sensex and Nifty, said Kotak Institutional Equities.(Read)

1:18 p.m.: Parliament panel recommends limiting tobacco warnings size to 50 per cent on both sides of the cigarette packet. ITC shares fall 2.5 per cent to Rs 317, Godfrey Philips down 2 per cent to Rs 1,177 and VST Industries 3.2 per cent to Rs 1,607.

1:13 p.m.: Goldman Sachs has downgraded HDFC to sell for target price of Rs 990 per share. Goldman says structural changes to dampen profitability and HDFC’s core business is likely to be pressured. Shares fall 3 per cent to Rs 1,121.

1:07 p.m.: Sugar stocks were trading higher in trades today on the back of rising sugar prices in the international markets. Oudh Sugar Mills, Dalmia Bharat Sugar, Sakthi Sugars, Dhampur Sugar Mills, Dwarikesh Sugar, Mawana Sugar and Sree Renuka Sugars were among the gainers, up 4.2-16 per cent each.

1:00 p.m.: The market breadth was bearish as 1,488 stocks were declining while 900 were advancing.

12:26 p.m.: The stock markets extended losses in noon deals. The Sensex was down 201 points at 24,602 and Nifty declined 56 points to 7,483.

12:12 p.m.: Lupin was among the most actively traded stocks on the National Stock Exchange. The stock saw a spurt of 21.29 per cent in open interest in the futures and options segment. The stock was trading 5.5 per cent lower at Rs 1,765. Traders say built-up of short positions in the stock is the reason behind today’s fall.

11:56 a.m.: Infrastructure firm Larsen & Toubro (L&T) today said its construction arm has bagged orders worth Rs 1,672 crore across various business verticals. The company’s construction arm “has won orders worth Rs 1,672 crore”, it said in a BSE filing.

The first order is worth Rs 967 crore, received from UP Avas Vikas Parishad, for a multi-storey residential project in Lucknow.

Shares of the company were up 0.3 per cent at Rs 1,188. (Read)

11:40 a.m.: Shares of Jindal Steel and Power Ltd advanced as much as 2.34 per cent to Rs 61.15 on the National Stock Exchange after the company said that its subsidiary Jindal Power has entered into an agreement to sell stake in India Energy Exchange at an undisclosed amount.

11:18 a.m.: State Bank of India was the top gainer in the Sensex, up 2 per cent to Rs 185.50. Axis Bank, BHEL, Larsen & Toubro, Reliance Industries, Hero MotoCorp, ICICI Bank and Coal India were also among the gainers, up 0.15-1 per cent each.

11:10 a.m.: The market breadth was negative as 1,220 stocks were declining while 864 were advancing.

10:40 a.m.: The Sensex extends losses, falls 165 points to 24,639 and Nifty down 49 points at 7,490.

10:33 a.m.: Procter & Gamble Hygiene & Health Care shares fell as much as 1.3 per cent to Rs 6,048 after the company announced that it has stopped sale and manufacturing of its popular brand Vicks Action 500 Extra.

10:15 a.m.: Anil Manghnani, director at Modern Shares & Stock Brokers, is cautious on Crompton Greaves, which has rallied nearly 30 per cent in the past one month. He attributed the sharp gains in Crompton Greaves shares to a relief rally.

“It was technically beaten down. Looks like a technical bounce rather than something new. It probably has one more move on the downside,” he said.(Watch full interview)

10:13 a.m.: Select banking share were witnessing buying interest. The banking sub-index on the NSE, Bank Nifty was up 0.29 per cent; State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, Canara Bank, Bank of India, Yes Bank, ICICI Bank and Axis Bank were among the gainers, up 0.6-1 per cent each.

10:06 a.m.: The stock markets extended losses in morning trades. The Sensex fell over 100 points to 24,703 and 50-share Nifty was down 33 points at 7,505.

10:02 a.m.: Crompton Greaves shares tank 69 per cent to Rs 47.70 post de-merger of its consumer business.

9:54 a.m.: The rally in stock markets is done and it is time for Nifty to consolidate, says Aditya Agarwal, head technical research with Way2wealth. The Nifty faces tough resistance around 7,580-7,620, so investors should take short positions with stop loss at 7,620 for targets of 7,350-7,400, he added.(Read)

9:42 a.m.: Nyssa Corporation, Risa International, Visagar Polytex, Country Club Hospitality & Holidays, Magma Fincorp and R.S.Software India were among the losers from the small-cap space, down 3-5 per cent each.

9:33 a.m.: Indian Hotels was the top loser from the mid-cap space, down 1.3 per cent to Rs 95.70. Zee Entertainment, Alstom T&D, Cadila Healthcare, Sun TV, Page Industries, JSW Energy and Bharat Forge were also among the laggards.

9:30 a.m.: The Sensex and Nifty edged lower in opening deals on Tuesday tracking subdued global cues.

The Sensex fell as much as 110 points to 24,694 and Nifty declined 37 points to hit low of 7,501.

From the Nifty-50 basket of stocks, 36 were declining while 14 were gaining.

Lupin was the top Nifty loser, the stock slumped 7.1 per cent to Rs 1,736. Cairn India, HDFC, Vedanta, HCL Technologies, ITC, Cipla, Sun Pharma, ONGC, Dr Reddy’s Labs and Tata Steel were also among the losers, down 0.7-2.3 per cent each.

On the other hand, Tech Mahindra, Bosch, Infosys, BPCL, State Bank of India and Bank of Baroda were among the gainers.

On the sectoral front, pharma stocks were among the worst hit. The Nifty Pharma index was down 1.6 per cent. FMCG, energy and IT indices were also quoting in red.

The broader markets were trading on a mixed note. The BSE mid-cap index was down 0.12 per cent while the small-cap index was up 0.16 per cent.

8:05 a.m.: The Sensex and Nifty are likely to open on a flat note tracking flat Nifty futures on the Singapore Stock Exchange amid subdued global cues.

The Nifty futures traded on Singapore Stock Exchange was trading marginally higher, up 0.08 per cent or 6 points at 7,552.

Meanwhile, other Asian stock markets were tentative on Tuesday as they braced for a run of policy announcements from the world’s major central banks this week, with all eyes on the Bank of Japan’s meeting later in the day after it stunned markets in January by adopting negative rates.

With the global economy slowing and many countries facing deflationary pressures, investors’ attention was squarely on policy decisions from the world’s major central banks.

China’s Shanghai Composite was down 0.48 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.6 per cent and Japan’s Nikkei was down 0.04 per cent.

Overnight, Wall Street shares were narrowly mixed. The Dow Jones industrial average advanced 0.09 per cent, while the S&P 500 lost 0.13 per cent.

Back home, foreign institutional investors bought shares worth Rs 1,035.63 crore while the domestic institutional investors sold shares worth Rs 805.34 crore on Monday.