The two key equity benchmarks, Sensex and Nifty, on Thursday, closed lower for the third consecutive session as the US Federal Reserve signaling prolonged period of higher interest rates weighed on investors. Further, analysts see ongoing foreign institutional investor (FII) selling and elevated crude oil prices added to concerns. Global market weakness further dampened sentiments on Dalal Street.
At the closing bell, the S&P BSE Sensex was down 570 points or 0.85 per cent at 66,230.24, while the Nifty declined 159.05 points or 0.8 per cent to 19,742.35.
On the 30-share platform, Mahindra & Mahindra (down 3 per cent), ICICI Bank, SBI, IndusInd Bank, and Kotak Mahindra Bank were among the top losers. On the flip side, Tech Mahindra, Asian Paints, Infosys, Bharti Airtel, and HUL took the lead.
The major losers on the Nifty50 also included Mahindra & Mahindra, followed by ICICI Bank, Cipla, SBI, and IndusInd Bank, while the gainers were Adani Enterprises, Tech Mahindra, Dr. Reddy, Asian Paints, and Bharti Airtel.
In the border market, the BSE MidCap and BSE SmallCap indices fell 1 per cent each.
According to CNBC TV18, BSE-listed companies lost Rs 2.5 lakh crore in market cap on Thursday.
Sectorwise, the Nifty PSU Bank index slipped 2.3 per cent, followed by up to 1.7 per cent sell-off in Nifty Auto, Bank, Financial Services, and Realty indices. Only, Nifty Media saw marginal gains.
Analysts noted that Auto stocks garnered profit-taking ahead of the monthly sales data, while banking stocks declined due to concerns about margins, with ICICI Bank being the top loser. Public sector banks also saw a decline in stock prices with significant trading volumes, and SBI fell below the Rs 300 level.
In the previous session on Wednesday, the S&P BSE Sensex shed 796 points or 1.18 per cent to close at 66,800.84. On the other hand, the Nifty settled down 231.90 points or 1.15 per cent to 19,901.40.
Asian markets, including Seoul, Tokyo, Shanghai, and Hong Kong, closed with losses on Wednesday. European markets were also trading in negative territory. Meanwhile, the US markets concluded in the red on Wednesday. The decision by the US Federal Reserve to maintain its key interest rate unchanged for the second time in three meetings suggests a moderation in its efforts to combat inflation due to easing price pressures.
The Indian rupee exhibited consolidation within a narrow range and concluded 5 paise higher at 83.06 (provisional) against the US dollar on Thursday. In the interbank foreign exchange market, the rupee opened at 83.16 against the US dollar and settled at 83.06 (provisional), marking a 5 paise increase from its previous close. During the trading session, the rupee reached an intraday high of 83.02 and a low of 83.17.
While the rupee initially weakened following a flat opening due to hawkish signals from the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), it managed to end the session with minor losses. This recovery was supported by a retreat in crude oil prices and potential central bank interventions.
The dollar index, which measures the dollar’s strength against a basket of six currencies, increased by 0.18 per cent to 105.51. Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, declined by 1.05 per cent to $92.55 per barrel.
Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) were net sellers in the capital market on Wednesday, offloading shares worth Rs 3,110.69 crore, according to exchange data.