Sensex Falls 1,000 Points, Nifty Near 8,300 As Financial Stocks Drag Markets

The markets have started FY21 on a negative note, in line with global peers, as India entered an eighth day of a 21-day lockdown to curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus pandemic. The S&P BSE Sensex index had opened 36.84 points higher at 29,505.33, and the broader NSE Nifty 50 benchmark started the day at 8,584.10, down 13.65 points from the previous close. The markets soon lost stream as fears surrounding coronavirus continue to play on the minds of the market participants.
At 11:30 am, the Sensex was at 28,452, weaker by 1,026 points or 3.5 per cent and Nifty was at 8,300, down 300 points or 3.5 per cent. The broader markets were out-performing the benchmark indices, with the BSE Midcap index shedding 1.6 per cent to 10,397 and the BSE Smallcap index losing 0.4 per cent to 9,569. Financial stocks were the major drags on the markets.

Equities elsewhere in Asia are having another weak session as the coronavirus continues to threaten global growth, leading a gauge of world stocks to post its biggest quarterly decline in more than a decade and oil prices to trade near lows last seen in 2002. Japan’s Nikkei fell 1.86 per cent in early trade.

Oil prices mixed, US inventory build-up heightens oversupply concerns. Crude oil benchmarks opened the month mixed on Wednesday, following their biggest-ever quarterly and monthly losses, as data showed a bigger-than-expected rise in inventories in the United States. Brent crude was down by 21 cents, or 0.8 per cent, at $26.14 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate crude was up by 27 cents, or 1.3 per cent, at $20.75 a barrel.

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