The Indian benchmark indices ended Friday’s session lower, down over 1 per cent, triggered by an across-the-board sell-off that saw all the Nifty sectoral indices ending the session in the red. Weak global cues and rich valuations of the domestic markets rang alarm bells, prompting investors to book profit.
The benchmark S&P BSE Sensex breached below the 49,000-mark during the intra-day trade, and hit a low of 48,795 on the BSE, plunging around 860 points from day’s high. The Nifty50, on the other hand, skid 260 points from day’s high to hit a low of 14,358. Volatility gauge, India VIX, jumped over 4 per cent today to close at 24 levels.
Sensex ended in the sea of red with 26 of the 30 constituents ending the day in the red. Tech Mahindra (down 4 per cent) was the top loser on the index, followed by losses in ONGC, HCL Tech, Asian Paints, Ultratech Cement, HUL, and NTPC, down between 2 per cent and 3.7 per cent. The index closed at 49,035 levels, down 549.5 points or 1.11 per cent.
Weightage-wise, HDFC, Reliance Industries, Infosys, ICICI Bank, and HUL dragged the index by 300 points.
On NSE, the Nifty50 index slipped below the 14,500-mark and settled at 14,433 levels, down 162 points or 1.11 per cent lower. This was both the indices biggest one-day fall in a month.
On the technical front, Nifty needs to hold the 14380-mark, failing which may lead to a correction till the levels of 14180-14200.
For the week, both the benchmarks are up by about half a per cent.
In the broader market, the S&P BSE MidCap and SmallCap indices settled with a cut of 1.25 per cent and 1.06 per cent, respectively.
On the sectoral front, investors booked profits, especially in the major tech companies which came out with better-than-expected December quarter results. The Nifty IT index plunged 2.24 per cent and was the top sectoral loser in Friday’s session. Among individual stocks, Tech Mahindra, Coforge, and Wipro fell over 3 per cent each while Naukri, Mindtree, LTI, and Infosys fell over 2 per cent each.
Individually, HCL Tech, which reported its Q3 results earlier today and beat Street expectations by a huge margin, tumbled 4 per cent on the BSE. It’s net profit came in at Rs 3,969 crore, clocking a 35% YoY growth.
Meanwhile, Nifty Financial Services, FMCG, Metals, and Private bank were down 1 per cent. Nifty Bank index skid 273 points, or 0.8 per cent, and ended at 32,247.
However, certain stocks continued to soar in this weak market. shares of Bharti Airtel ended 5 per cent higher on Friday after the global index provider MSCI said it will take a decision on increasing the weightage of the telecom services provider at upcoming index review in February. The stock traded close to its record high level of Rs 612 in the intra-day deals.
Moreover, shares of Tata Motors ended at a 28-month high of Rs 261 on the BSE. The stock, which jumped nearly 8 per cent today, pared gains later after it clarified that the company had no plans to form partnership with US-based Tesla for electric mobility.
Prospects of tighter lockdowns in Germany and France as well as new Covid-19 restrictions in China cut into optimism about a global economic recovery. The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 0.5 per cent.
The German DAX was down 0.5 per cent and France’s CAC 40 fell 0.6 per cent. Furthermore, UK’s FTSE 100 also declined 0.6 per cent despite data showing that Britain’s economy recorded a smaller-than-expected contraction in November.
In Asia, MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan down 0.59 per cent.
Chinese blue-chips shed 0.97 per cent amid worries over rising COVID-19 cases in China, and after the Chinese central bank drained liquidity from the country’s banking system, suggesting a tightening bias in monetary policy.
Dow Jones Futures were last trading over 100 points lower, indicating a weak start on Wall Street later today.