Sensex Plunges 1,448 Points, Nifty Holds 11,200 As Coronavirus Rattles Markets

Ghughuti Bulletin

Sensex Plunges 1,448 Points, Nifty Holds 11,200 As Coronavirus Rattles Markets

Banking, automobile, metal and information technology shares were worst hit in the day’s carnage.

Domestic stock markets slumped more than 3 per cent on Friday continuing their downward spiral for the sixth session in a row, as fears the coronavirus outbreak may trigger recession across major economies spooked their global peers. Hopes the coronavirus would be contained to China vanished on Friday as infections spread rapidly around the world, compelling countries to stockpile medical equipment and investors to take flight in expectation of a global recession. The S&P BSE Sensex ended at 38,297.29, lower by 1448.37 points – or 3.64 per cent – from its previous close, and the Nifty shut shop down 431.55 points – or 3.71 per cent – at 11,201.75.

Here are 10 things to know about the slump in the markets today:

  1. There was carnage across the Street; all the sectoral indices on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) ended with losses, and 49 out of the 50 shares in the Nifty basket ended in the red. Banking, automobile, metal and IT shares were the worst hit in the mayhem.

  2. That was the biggest single-day fall in the indices since February 2018, and the worst week for the market in four years, in which they declined 7 per cent each.

  3. The Nifty VIX – a gauge of the markets’ expectation of volatility in the near term – soared as much as 33.39 per cent during the session, highlighting a spike in volatility and fear among the market participants – before settling up 28.75 per cent.

  4. Asian stocks tracked another overnight plunge in Wall Street’s benchmarks on Friday with the markets in China, Japan and South Korea posting heavy losses. European stock market benchmarks, including the CAC, DAX and FTSE, plummeted around 3 per cent each in early trades as the virus threatened to sweep across Europe and elsewhere.

  5. Analysts say the increase in the number of coronavirus cases highlighted the risk of world economy taking a bigger-than-anticipated blow in a world that is more integrated than ever. The virus has now infected more than 82,000 people globally and counting.

  6. “Until last week, the market was of the view that coronavirus is going to have only a minimum impact on global economy… An increase in the number of new cases is changing the view,” said Vinod Nair, head of research at Geojit Financial Services. “There are fears of some slowdown in the economy.”

  7. “Selling pressure was seen through the day with no major recovery seen from the lows. It was the first trading session of the near month March 2020 derivative series,” said Deepak Jasani, head retail research at HDFC Securities. “Sentiments remained negative as the coronavirus has now spread to many countries across the world and there is fear that new outbreaks will push down global demand.”

  8. Analysts awaited official data on gross domestic product (GDP) due at 5:30 pm for any signs of revival in the economy, which is staring at its worst pace of annual expansion since the 2008-09 global financial crisis. Many economists expect GDP growth to pick up to 4.7 per cent in October-December, from 4.5 per cent in the previous quarter.

  9. Metal stocks were plummeted during the day, with Vedanta nosediving 13 per cent, while Jindal Steel, Hindalco, Tata Steel and NMDC losing around 7 per cent each. Information technology stocks took it on the chin, with Infosys, TCS and Tech Mahindra shedding 5-7 per cent each. Auto stocks also had a rough ride, with Tata Motors, M&M and Ashok Leyland losing around 7 per cent each. And in the banking space, SBI, ICICI Bank, SBI, Bank of India and Canara Bank losing 5-10 per cent each.

  10. ITC was the only Nifty-50 stock to withstand the bloodbath on Dalal Street, with a gain of 0.3 per cent. The market breadth overwhelmingly favoured the bears; out of the 2,620 stocks traded on the BSE, only 457 advanced while 2,010 declined.

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