Equity benchmark indices Sensex and Nifty settled with losses for the fourth straight session on Tuesday as the ongoing AGR issue weighed on telecom and financial stocks.
After trading in the deep red for a better part of the session, the BSE gauge Sensex reclaimed most of its lost ground towards the fag-end. At the closing bell, the index was down 161.31 points or 0.39 per cent at 40,894.38.
Intra-day, the Sensex fell over 444 points and touched the day’s low of 40,610.95.
The NSE barometer Nifty too staged a late recovery from the day’s low and settled at 11,992.50, showing a fall of 53.30 points or 0.44 per cent.
On the Sensex chart, Bharti Airtel was the biggest loser with nearly 3 per cent drop in its share price. It was followed by IndusInd Bank, Maruti Suzuki, HeroMoto Corp and Tata Steel.
The Supreme Court on Monday refused to stop the telecom department from taking any coercive steps for recovery of dues from Vodafone Idea.
Shares of Vodafone Idea on Tuesday tanked more than 16 per cent in intra-day trade due to rating downgrade on AGR dues and other issues of the company.
Reliance Industries declined nearly 1 per cent after it announced consolidation of all its media and distribution businesses under flagship ‘Network18’.
The three group entities namely Hathway Cable & Datacom, Den Networks and TV18 Broadcast — which would be merged into Network18 — rose by 20 per cent, 9.98 per cent and 14.7 per cent, respectively.
“Market sentiment continued to be hit by Covid-19 after the issue of warning note from a key global MNC regarding the sales impact. Global weakness is expected to hurt domestic market as high valuation and low economic growth is not supportive,” Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services commented.
Also, the huge government dues to be paid by telecom sector will keep banking stocks volatile impacting the market performance, Nair added.
In contrast, SBI, Infosys, PowerGrid, Tech Mahindra and TCS featured among major gainers.
Sectorally, BSE telecom index suffered the most by shedding over 4 per cent. Other top laggards included metal, auto and realty indices.
In the broader market, BSE midcap and smallcap indices underperformed the benchmark, dropping by 0.6 per cent and 0.45 per cent, respectively.
Market breadth was negative as 1,655 stocks declined out of 2,654 scrips that traded on BSE. As many as 845 stocks advanced while 154 were unchanged.
Asian markets, barring China, closed with heavy losses after warning by Apple and HSBC over the impact of novel coronavirus outbreak. The coronavirus epidemic that emerged in central China has now killed nearly 1,800 people and spread around the world.
Apple said that it might not meet its sales projections for January-March due to the outbreak. HSBC Holdings said the epidemic was impaxting its Asia business and announced shedding USD 100 billion in assets, trimming of its investment banking along with 35,000 job cuts in three years.
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