Markets begin FY21 on a bleak note

Markets begin FY21 on a bleak note

Sensex plunges 1,203 points; bank, IT stocks hammered

Mumbai: Markets began the new fiscal year with yet another bruising selloff on Wednesday as global sentiment remained grim due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Reversing the previous session's gains, the 30-share BSE barometer Sensex slumped 1,203.18 points or 4.08 per cent to finish at 28,265.31. Similarly, the NSE Nifty tanked 343.95 points, or 4 per cent, to close at 8,253.80. Global equities skidded as weak factory data from Asia and a steady rise in coronavirus cases pointed to the tough road ahead for the world economy.

Dismal auto sales numbers and reports of India missing its fiscal deficit targets by a wide margin further sapped investor confidence here, traders said.

Tech Mahindra was the top loser in the Sensex pack, crashing 9.21 per cent, followed by Kotak Bank (8.81 per cent), TCS (6.23 per cent), Infosys (5.65 per cent), Axis Bank (5.50 per cent) and SBI (5.26 per cent). Hero MotoCorp, Bajaj Auto, Bajaj Finance and Titan were the only gainers, spurting up to 2.21 per cent. According to traders, domestic equities plunged in tandem with global stocks as no respite from the coronavirus pandemic seemed in sight. Extensive lockdowns to contain the spread of the virus have severely hit business outlook, they said.

"The first day of the financial year started off on a negative note, impacted by the negative global markets and also domestic uncertainties with regards to banks' stressed assets and auto numbers. "FIIs have net sold around Rs 62,000 crore in Equity in March and with virus infections increasing, markets are anticipating a worsening of the situation," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

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