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MARKETS: Investors lose Rs 3 trn as Sensex tanks 788 pts on US-Iran crisis

All that happened in the markets today.

SI Reporter  | New Delhi 

EVENT HIGHLIGHTS

Britain votes to leave EU, Cameron quits, markets rocked
Indian equities were hit by the boiling tensions in the Middle East on Monday, as the world's third biggest oil consumer stared at potential supply disruptions, and the consequent rise in the import bill due to surging crude oil prices. 

The benchmark S&P BSE Sensex breached below the 41,000-mark to end the day at 40,676.63 level, down 788 points or 1.9 per cent. In the intra-day trade, the Sensex slipped 850.65 points, its biggest single-day fall in the last 4 months -- to hit a low of 40,613.96. With the 2 per cent decline, investors lost nearly Rs 3-trillion in terms of market cap today.

At the index level, only two constituents -- Titan and Power Grid -- among the pack of 30 managed to settle the day in the green, while Bajaj Finance, SBI, IndusInd Bank, and Maruti Suzki emerged as the top losers today. 

On the NSE, the Nifty50 closed at 11,993-mark, down 234 points or 1.91 per cent. The index logged its biggest one-day loss in the last six months, and hit an intra-day low of 11,974.20. 

Fears of supply disruption to oil gained ground after US President Donald Trump threatened sanctions on Iraq, the second largest producer among the OPEC, after the latter's parliament voted in favour of expelling US and foreign troops. Besides, Iran voted to "abandon" the 2015 nuclear deal. 

At 3:30 pm, Brent Crude Futures, which hit a high of $70.45 per barrel in the early trade, were quoting at $69.82 per barrel-mark, up 1.78 per cent.

Among key sectoral indices, all the indices lost ground today with Nifty PSU Bank index being the top laggard. The index declined over 4 per cent at close as rising crude oil prices lifted bond yields, coupled with reports that the government may not propose capital infusion under the upcoming Union Budget for 2020-21. Additionally, Nifty Bank index tanked 898.7 points in the intra-day trade, its biggest single-day fall since April 2016. Five financials - HDFC Bank, SBI, HDFC, Bajaj Fin and ICICI Bank have collectively lost Rs 59,607 crore market-cap

That apart, Nifty Auto, Financial Services, Metal, Realty and Private Bank indices slipped over 2 per cent by close.

In the broader market, the S&P BSE mid-cap index tumbled 2.33 per cent to close at 14,761.66, while the S&P BSE small-cap index lost 1.96 per cent to end at 13,715.18.

GLOBAL CUES

European shares extended losses on Monday as tensions following the killing of a top Iranian general by the United States kept buying restricted to safe havens.

The pan-European STOXX 600 equity index was down 0.7 per cent and was set for its worst day in a week. German stocks were the worst performers in the region, dropping about 1 per cent.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan slipped 0.7 per cent. Japan's Nikkei slid almost 2 per cent in a sour return from holiday, while E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 ESc1 fell 0.3 per cent in very choppy trade.

In the commodity market, gold prices soared by Rs 857 to Rs 40,969 per 10 gram in futures trade as speculators moved towards safe haven, amid rising tensions in the Middle East. 

(With inputs from Reuters)

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