Equity market crumbled on Monday as stocks across-the-board fell like ninepins after India went into the lockdown to contain the spread of Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. In the early deals, trading was once again halted for 45 minutes as the Sensex hit a lower circuit limit of 10 per cent. The sell-off continued when the trading resumed. It was the second instance of trading halt in the Indian market in a span of 10 days. Earlier, in March 13, Nifty hit lower circuit in the opening deals for the first time since May 2009.
The S&P BSE Sensex nosedived 3,935 points or over 13 per cent to settle at 25,981 levels with all the 30 constituents ending in the red. On the NSE, the benchmark Nifty tanked a whopping 1,135 points or 13 per cent to end the session at 7,610. Fear guage India VIX rose 6.64 per cent to 71.56 levels. With today's fall, investors lost Rs 13.88 trillion wealth while in the last month investors have lost Rs 56.22 trillion.
Among sectoral indices on the NSE, rate-sensitive stocks took the biggest knock with the Nifty Private Bank index plunging over 17 per cent to 9,030 levels. Axis Bank was the biggest loser on the index - down 28 per cent at Rs 310 apiece. Nifty Bank slipped over 16 per cent or 3,299 points to end at 17,018 while Nifty Auto plunged over 14 per cent or 761 points to 4,609 levels.
In the broader market, the S&P BSE Midcap index slumped 13 per cent to 9,711 levels while the S&P BSE SmallCap index tanked over 12 per cent to 8,873 levels.
Market breadth was in favour of bears as out of 2,401 stocks traded on the BSE, 233 advanced and 2,036 declined while 132 remained unchanged.