Updated: January 23, 2021 1:04:40 am
After hitting the 50,000-level on Thursday, stock markets on Friday came under selling pressure amid weak global markets and persistent worries over Covid pandemic and economic recovery. The benchmark Sensex fell 746 points, or 1.50 per cent, to 48,878.54 and the Nifty50 plummeted 218 points, or 1.50 per cent, to 14,371.90 on across-the-board selling.
The benchmark equity indices ended lower for the second straight day, correcting further after making a record high on Thursday. This was the biggest single-day drop for the benchmarks in a month. Friday’s correction marked the end of an 11-week gaining streak for the frontline indices, which was the longest since 2009. Among the sectors, bank, PSU bank, metals and realty fell the most while auto index gained.
Adding to investor worries, data showed the flash eurozone purchasing managers index dropping in January to a two-month low of 47.5, coming close to the expected 47.6 — from 49.1 in December. Ajit Mishra, VP-research, Religare Broking, said sectoral indices traded in tandem with the benchmark wherein banking and metal ended as the top losers. Selling pressure was visible on the broader front, too, as they ended in the range of 1-1.2 per cent. Meanwhile, the rupee clawed back lost ground towards the fag-end of the session and settled with a marginal 2 paise gain at 72.97 against the US dollar on Friday, supported by easing crude oil prices.
In midday trading on Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 117.4 points, or 0.38 per cent, to 31,058.61, the S&P 500 lost 6.81 points, or 0.18 per cent, to 3,846.26 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 14.89 points, or 0.11 per cent, to 13,516.03.The risk-off mood followed a period of relief after the transition of power in the United States.
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