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Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Markets tumble from record highs on profit-booking; Sensex sinks 695 points

Snapping a three-day winning streak, the 30-share BSE Sensex slumped 694.92 points or 1.56 per cent to finish at 43,828.10. The index touched a lifetime high of 44,825.37 in the opening session. Similarly, the broader NSE Nifty touched a record intra-day peak of 13,145.85, before ending 196.75 points or 1.51 per cent down at 12,858.40.

By: PTI | Mumbai | Updated: November 25, 2020 5:28:03 pm
A street stands empty near the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) in Mumbai, India, on Friday, March 27, 2020. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

Equity markets’ record run screeched to a halt on Wednesday as investors pocketed gains in banking, finance and IT counters amid a mixed trend overseas.

Snapping a three-day winning streak, the 30-share BSE Sensex slumped 694.92 points or 1.56 per cent to finish at 43,828.10. The index touched a lifetime high of 44,825.37 in the opening session.

Similarly, the broader NSE Nifty touched a record intra-day peak of 13,145.85, before ending 196.75 points or 1.51 per cent down at 12,858.40.

Kotak Bank was the top loser in the Sensex pack, skidding 3.22 per cent, followed by Axis Bank, Sun Pharma, HDFC Bank, Bajaj Finance, Asian Paints, Bharti Airtel, Infosys and Tech Mahindra.

Only three index components closed in the green — ONGC, PowerGrid and IndusInd Bank, jumping up to 6.25 per cent.

Global equities were mixed after the US’ Dow Jones Industrial Average breached the 30,000-mark for the first time in the overnight session on COVID-19 vaccine optimism.

Reports that US President-elect Joe Biden would appoint former Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen as Treasury Secretary also cheered investors.

“The market rally which was led by developments on vaccine and FPI inflows came to a halt today due to profit booking across sectors in the second half of the trading session. While western markets continued its positivity, being encouraged by news on vaccine developments and ease in the US political risk.

“We can expect profit booking to continue in our domestic market, in the short-term, as the liquidity driven rally can take a pause having reached all-time high on a monthly basis. This money was triggered by the overwhelming result of the US election unleashing high amounts of funds which was put on-hold. FIIs can take a breather and check for the next phase of policies in the US and Europe for 2021,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

BSE telecom, realty, bankex, healthcare, auto and capital goods indices tumbled up to 2.20 per cent, while oil and gas closed higher.

Broader BSE midcap and smallcap indices dropped up to 1.76 per cent.

Elsewhere in Asia, bourses in Shanghai and Seoul settled in the red, while Tokyo and Hong Kong ended with gains.

Stock exchanges in Europe were also trading on a mixed note in early deals.

Meanwhile, Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, was trading 1.15 per cent higher at USD 48.33 per barrel.

In the forex market, the rupee appreciated by 10 paise to close at 73.91 against the US dollar.

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