The benchmark BSE Sensex got off to a lower start on Friday, tracking a sell-off in global markets amid escalating trade war worries.
The 30-share index, which had lost 114.94 points in the previous session, fell by another 50.91 points, or 0.14 per cent, to 35,381.48 in early trade. Capital goods, realty, infrastructure, power, healthcare and metal stocks showed weakness, falling by up to 0.35 per cent.
The NSE Nifty also was quoting lower by 5.20 points, or 0.05 per cent, at 10,735.90.
Major losers included Coal India, Reliance Industries, Asian Paints, SBI, Adani Ports, Sun Pharma, IndusInd Bank, Yes Bank, PowerGrid, Bajaj Auto, Maruti Suzuki and HDFC Bank, declining up to 1.40 per cent.
According to traders, sustained selling by participants in line with a weak trend at other Asian markets following overnight losses at the Wall Street amid investor concerns about the trade dispute between the US and China dampened trading sentiments here.
Meanwhile, India will raise customs duty on 29 products, including almond, walnut and pulses, imported from the US as a retaliatory action against the tariff hike by Washington.
The duty hike would come into effect from August 4, the Finance Ministry said in a notification. In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was down 0.15 per cent and Shanghai Composite shed 0.70 per cent in early trade on Friday. Japan’s Nikkei too fell 0.74 per cent.
The US Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.80 per cent lower on Thursday.
Rupee gains 19 paise, global dollar weakness helps
The rupee firmed up by 19 paise to 67.79 against the dollar on Friday after increased selling of the US currency by exporters and banks.
The dollar slipping from an 11-month peak against other currencies overseas as investors took profits also helped the rupee. Further, fresh foreign capital inflows took the local currency higher but a lower opening of the domestic equity markets capped the rise, dealers said.
On Thursday, the rupee had appreciated by 10 paise to close at 67.98 against the greenback on sustained selling of the American currency by exporters and local banks.