Friday, August 16, 2013

Sensex falls over 400 points as rupee nears record low - NDTV

The BSE Sensex plunged over 700 points or 3.6 per cent on Friday tracking a record low rupee and on fears that an early rollback of U.S. monetary stimulus would trigger a selloff by foreign investors. The 50-share Nifty traded below the key 5,550, dropping over 220 points. (Read: Why Sensex plunged 700 points)

The rupee traded at 61.74 as of 1.55 p.m. well below the record low of 62.03 reached earlier in the session as exporters stepped in to sell the greenback. The government and the Reserve Bank unveiled several measures to stop the slide in the rupee on Wednesday, but these steps failed to shore up the rupee. (Read: Rupee breaches 62, hits recrod low)

Rohit Srivastava of Sharekhan told NDTV markets are falling because of panic selling.

"This has surprised everyone. I think we are seeing a panic selloff right now because of the local currency which has moved from 54 to 62 and has taken a lot of people by surprise," Mr Srivastava said.

Banking stocks led the sharp selloff in markets today, with the Bank Nifty falling over 5 per cent. Public sector lenders such as Bank of Baroda and Punjab National Bank were among the top Nifty loser. Private lenders such as Axis Bank and ICICI Bank also saw selling pressure.

Axis Bank slumped nearly 9 per cent after MSCI said it would exclude the bank from its standard and large cap indexes.

Metal, energy, realty and capital goods shares also fell over 4 per cent dragging the benchmark indices lower.

India's biggest two-wheeler manufacturer Hero MotoCorp was the only stock trading higher on the Nifty benchmark.

"We are in a crisis situation. The market sentiment is getting more pessimistic by the day and the rupee continues to be the major headwind. The macros have completely clouded the micros," Mehraboon Irani of Nirmal Bang Securities said.

Asian markets closed lower, while European stocks opened higher. But the falls in global markets were mild when compared to the Sensex and Nifty.

This is a local situation and not a global panic, Mr Srivastava said.
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