Key indices were hovering near the day's low in mid-afternoon trade. At 14:16 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was down 391.99 points or 1.02% at 37,997.83. The Nifty 50 index was down 118.40 points or 1.02% at 11,470.70. Concerns over heightened US-China trade tensions weighed on investors sentiment. The Sensex moved above and below the psychologically important 38,000 mark.
Indices extended losses in afternoon trade after opening lower. Indices trimmed losses in mid-afternoon trade. The Sensex fell 35.30 points, or 0.09% at the day's high of 38,354.52 at the onset of trading session. The index fell 422.74 points, or 1.10% at the day's low of 37,967.08 in afternoon trade. The Nifty fell 16.10 points, or 0.14% at the day's high of 11,573 at the onset of trading session. The index fell 136.15 points, or 1.17% at the day's low of 11,452.95 in afternoon trade.
The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was weak. On BSE, 1045 shares rose and 1603 shares fell. A total of 169 shares were unchanged.
Power generation stocks declined. Jaiprakash Power Ventures (down 4.75%), Torrent Power (down 3.71%), GMR Infrastructure (down 2.32%), Adani Power (down 2%), NHPC (down 1.93%), Tata Power (down 1.4%), CESC (down 1.04%), JSW Energy (down 0.86%), Reliance Infrastructure (down 0.73%) and Reliance Power (down 0.41%), edged lower. NTPC was up 0.32%.
Most auto stocks declined. Escorts (down 1.84%), Mahindra & Mahindra (down 1.8%), Hero MotoCorp (down 1.71%), Ashok Leyland (down 1.1%), Bajaj Auto (down 1.09%), Maruti Suzuki India (down 0.83%) and Eicher Motors (down 0.12%), edged lower. TVS Motor Company was up 0.14%.
Tata Motors was up 0.63%. Tata Motors' subsidiary Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) reported 4.9% fall in total retail sales to 36,629 vehicles in August 2018 over August 2017. Jaguar retail sales were 11,802 vehicles in August, up 7.7% year on year, driven by the introduction of the E-PACE and I-PACE, as well as XE long wheelbase sales in China. Land Rover retailed 24,827 vehicles in August, down 9.9% compared to August 2017 as increased sales of the Velar and the refreshed Range Rover were offset by the impact of the lower sales in China on Range Rover Evoque and Discovery Sport in particular. The announcement was made after market hours on Friday, 7 September 2018.
Retail sales were up in the UK (64.9%), Overseas markets (20.2%) and North America (2.5%), with Europe slightly below last year (3.1%), waiting for last WLTP certifications. The China market remains unsettled following tariff changes and trade tensions (down 38.1%), although the reduction in duty from 25% to 15% is expected to be beneficial over the full year. UK sales were boosted by a catch up in WLTP certification of vehicles with only 2 derivatives remaining to be certified in September.
Overseas, shares in Europe struggled to make gains while most Asian shares were trading lower on Monday, as trade tensions between the US and China remain in focus. China's trade surplus with the United States widened to a record in August even as the country's export growth slowed slightly. Trade surplus hit $31.05 billion in August, up from $28.09 billion in July, customs data showed on Saturday, surpassing the previous record set in June. Over the first eight months of the year, China's surplus with its largest export market has risen nearly 15%, adding to tensions in the trade relationship between the world's two largest economies. China's annual export growth in August moderated slightly to 9.8%, the data showed, the weakest rate since March but only slightly below recent trends.
US stocks closed lower Friday after US President Donald Trump threatened tariffs on a further $267 billion worth of Chinese imports, on top of earlier promises to levy duties on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods. While the US tariffs on $200 billion Chinese goods have not been implemented, Trump said they could "take place very soon, depending on what happens with them."
US jobs report that showed that 201,000 jobs were added in the month of August. The unemployment rate held steady at 3.9% and wage growth showed signs of accelerating.
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