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.
>> Banking counters, including Punjab National Bank, Bank of Baroda, State Bank of India, and Canara Bank slipped over 6 per cent on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) on Monday as heightened tensions between the United States and Iran pushed bond yields higher in India.
>> Shares of oil & gas companies, tyre, paint, and aviation firms were under pressure today as oil prices continued to surge for the seconf straight day. Hindustan Petroleum slipped 7.5 per cent in the intra-day trade to hit an over 4 month low of Rs 244. The stock eventually settled 7.2 per cent lower.
>> Shares of Titan Company climbed 3 per cent to Rs 1,170 on the BSE on Monday after the company’s jewelry sales for the December quarter came in line with guidance. The stock closed 1.65 per cent higher at Rs 1,158.