Investors lose Rs 2.6 lakh crore in 6 hours as bears crush banking stocks

Investors lose Rs 2.6 lakh crore in 6 hours as bears crush banking stocks

NEW DELHI: Rs 2.62 lakh crore wiped out in a little more than six hours. Or in other words, the market lost a Rolls-Royce Phantom — the most expensive car available for sale in India — every second. This was the aftermath of mayhem on Wednesday.

Bears liquidated their long positions ahead of the Budget and F&O expiry, sending benchmark indices tumbling. Heavyweights RIL and financials were among the worst hit, as worries over Q3 underperformance put them under pressure. Selling by FIIs also dented sentiments.

The 30-share pack Sensex tanked 937.66 points or 1.94 per cent to close at 47,409.93. Its broader peer NSE Nifty slid 271.40 points or 1.91 per cent to 13,967.50. Both indices turned negative for the current year.

“Indian bourses mirrored mixed sentiment from global peers with a downward rally owing to consecutive days of FII selling. Barring the defensive FMCG segment, all sectors traded in the red zone with banking and pharma stocks being the worst hit. The global markets were mixed today ahead of the US Fed meeting amid uncertainty over the US stimulus. We should expect higher volatility in the coming days’ given pre-budget event risk,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

Market at a glance:

  • RIL continues its post Q3, plunges 3% to slide below Rs 1,900 level
  • Investors dump ICICI Sec even thought PAT doubles, stock down 7%
  • India VIX rises 5% ahead of F&O expiry, index ends at 24.39
  • Nifty FMCG lone sectoral gainer; banking indices most hit
  • Nifty Smallcap index defies market trend, ends with gains

“Investors should build for a defensive portfolio and also hold cash, as there will be good buying opportunities in the future.”

— Naveen Kulkarni, Axis Securities

Among the bluechips, Tech Mahindra was the top gainer, rising 2.62 per cent. SBI Life Insurance, Wipro, ITC, UltraTech Cement, HCL Tech, Nestle India and Power Grid were other gainers.

Tata Motors was the top loser in the Nifty pack, falling 4.44 per cent. Tata Steel, Titan, IndusInd Bank, Hindalco, Hero MotoCorp, Axis Bank, M&M, Dr Reddy’s Labs and HDFC Bank were other stocks that ended in the red.

The broader market indices closed on a mixed note, outperforming their headline peers. Nifty Smallcap rose 0.15 per cent and Nifty Midcap skidded 1.58 per cent. Nifty 500 — the broadest index on NSE — dropped 1.68 per cent.

Gujarat Gas, L&T Tech Services, National Aluminium, Tata Elxsi, Graphite India and Indian Energy Exchange were top gainers from mid and smallcap indices, climbing in the range of 3-7 per cent.

Vakrangee, DCB Bank, Ujjivan Financial Services, ICICI Securities, LIC Housing Finance and Future Retail were major losers from broader market space, falling in the range of 4-7 per cent.

Barring Nifty FMCG that added 0.30 per cent, all sectoral indices closed with cuts. Nifty Private Bank was the biggest loser, down 3.05 per cent followed by 2.93 per cent. Nifty Financial Service, Nifty Realty and Nifty Metal were other losers.

Market breadth was in favour of losers as 1,066 stocks ended in the green, while 1,847 counters settled with cuts. As many as 147 securities hit 52-week highs, mostly from the smallcap space. Meanwhile, 42 scrips hit 52-week lows, mostly from the microcap space. About 240 stocks hit upper circuit limits and 339 lower circuit limits.

European markets were trading with cuts at the last count. London-based FTSE was down 0.24 per cent while Paris and Frankfurt were down 0.27 per cent and 0.52 per cent, respectively. Asian markets were mixed. with Hong Kong, South Korea, Thailand and Indonesia trading in the red, and others registering some gains.

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