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Indices log 9th straight session fall; financial stocks drag

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: May 13, 2019  | 18:43 IST

(Eds: Adding words in para 3) Mumbai, May 13 (PTI) Indian equities fell for the ninth session in a row on Monday as investors fretted about health of non-banking finance sector, US-China trade tensions and uncertainty over poll outcome. In their longest losing streak in years, the BSE Sensex crashed over 372 points and the NSE Nifty dived nearly 130 points on sustained sell-off across the board. In the past nine sessions, the Sensex has lost 1,940.73 points and the Nifty has given away 599.95 points. The BSE index widened its loss towards the fag-end of the session on emergence of intense selling in financial stocks as fresh concerns over liquidity crunch re-emerged. In percentage terms, however, Sun Pharma was the biggest loser with 9.39 per cent drop. Intra-day, the pharma major's shares tanked over 20 per cent. Other top Sensex laggards were Yes Bank, Tata Steel and Indusind Bank -- falling as much as 5.58 per cent. Among the gainers on the Sensex, HDFC topped the chart, rising 1.06 per cent, after the mortgage lender posted a 26.8 per cent rise in its standalone net profit. HUL, Infosys, Bajaj Finance, Coal India, Bajaj Auto and Hero MotoCorp too ended in the green. Sectorally, BSE healthcare, capital goods, power, oil and gas, metal, auto, energy and banking indices fell up to 3.53 per cent. On the other hand, only BSE IT index ended marginally higher. Broader BSE midcap and smallcap indices settled up to 2.15 per cent lower. After trading range-bound for most part of the day, the 30-share BSE benchmark saw steep plunge in the last hour and closed 372.17 points, or 0.99 per cent, lower at 37,090.82. The index hit an intra-day low of 36,999.84 and a high of 37,583.57. Similarly, the broader NSE Nifty sank 130.70 points or 1.16 per cent to settle at 11,148.20 points. During the day, the NSE gauge hit a low of 11,125.60 and a high of 11,300.20. Indian stock markets fell in line with mostly weaker Asian equities as trade talks between the US and China wrapped up Friday without an agreement. Besides, sustained foreign fund outflows also made investors jittery. Bourses in China, Japan and Korea ended in the red tracking news related to US-China trade talks. European stocks were also trading lower in early trade Monday. Adding to the weaker market sentiment, Corporate Affairs Secretary Injeti Srinivas said there is an "imminent crisis" in the non-banking financial companies sector as misadventures by some large entities and credit squeeze present a perfect recipe for disaster. In recent months, the country's financial system has been grappling with multiple woes in the wake of the turmoil at diversified IL&FS group as well as debt defaults by some other large entities. Shares of ITC too dropped 2.64 per cent. The company, meanwhile, announced elevation of its MD Sanjiv Puri as the Chairman and Managing Director. It also reported an 18.72 per cent rise in net profit at Rs 3,481.9 crore. The United States has recently announced hike in duty on import of Chinese products worth more than USD 200 billion. China has said that Beijing would not compromise on matters of principle and that tariffs on Chinese exports to the US should be lifted as a condition for striking a deal. Sunil Sharma, Chief Investment Officer, Sanctum Wealth Management, said, "Apart from global concerns, Indian markets are also worried about the liquidity crunch on the ground affecting both, investments and consumption in the country." He further said that a positive election outcome could turn sentiment around, create capital inflows and drive markets higher. Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) net sold equities worth Rs 1,056.01 crore on Monday, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) purchased shares to the tune of Rs 1,057.91 crore, provisional data available with stock exchanges showed. Meanwhile, the Indian rupee depreciated by 59 paise to close at 70.51 against the US dollar. Global oil benchmark Brent crude was trading 1.78 per cent higher at USD 71.88 per barrel. PTI ANS MKJ

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