Sensex downs 365 pts on fund outflow

Mumbai: The BSE Sensex fell to over two-year low of 15,699.97 today, down 365.45 points, as investors sold heavily ahead of the settlement in this month`s derivative contracts amid worries over slow growth in global economies.

Markets in Asia and Europe were weak on account of below-expected growth data from the US and China as well as persisting euro-zone debt troubles. FIIs sold stocks worth Rs 952.68 crore on Tuesday, according to stock exchange data. They have offloaded equities to the tune of Rs 2,356.60 crore in five sessions straight since November 15.

In all, 12 of the 13 sectoral indices closed with losses, as only BSE-Consumer Durables ended in the green. From the 30-scrip Sensex pack, only NTPC gained while 29 logged losses. Capital goods, teck, IT, refinery, banking, power and Metal stocks were hit hard.

Sensex opened weak and dropped to a low of 15,478.69 at mid-session, down nearly 587 points. However, it recovered some lost ground and closed at 15,699.97 – lowest since November 3, 2009 – down 365.45 points or 2.27 per cent. The broader 50-issue Nifty of the National Stock Exchange also tumbled 105.90 points or 2.20 per cent to two year low of 4,706.45.

Fall in RIL, Infosys, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, L&T, Bharti Airtel, HDFC, ITC, TCS, SBI, ONGC, Tata Motors and BHEL led to over 300 point loss in the Sensex. "Lower than expected US GDP figures and fear of deepening European debt crisis led to panic selling across the global equity markets," said Shanu Goel, Senior Research Analyst at Bonanza Capital.

"Sharp depreciation in the rupee added to the investor woes as chances of further FII outflows from the market have increased. Volatility associated with the derivative series expiry week was very much visible during the intra-day trading," she added.

Asian stocks fell after China`s manufacturing survey showed weakness and the US logging below-expected economic growth. The US Commerce Department cut its estimate of this year`s third-quarter growth to 2 per cent from 2.5 pc earlier.

Key indices in China, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan fell by up to 2.77 per cent. Japanese market was closed. European markets were down in the afternoon trade, with the CAC, DAX and the FTSE down by up to 0.7 per cent.

Back home, major losers were Jaiprakash (5.05 pc), HDFC Bank (3.85 pc), Bharti Airtel (3.70 pc), BHEL (3.58 pc), Wipro (3.17 pc), Larsen (2.85 pc), Jindal Steel (2.83 pc), RIL (2.68 pc), Infosys (2.67 pc), Tata Power (2.61 pc), ICICI Bank (2.53 pc), DLF (2.47 pc), Tata Motor (2.38 pc), Tata Steel (2.21 pc), ONGC (2.20 pc), HDFC (2.10 pc), TCS (2.04 pc), SBI (2.03 pc), M&M (1.98 pc), Hindalco (1.89 pc) and ITC (1.66 pc).

Among the sectoral indices, the BSE-Capital Goods plunged 3.04 per cent, Teck (2.65 pc), IT (2.48 pc), Oil & Gas (2.41 pc), Bankex (2.40 pc), Power (2.15 pc) and Metal (2 pc). The total market breadth remained negative with 2,054 stocks losing ground, as against 761 ending with gains. The total turnover was relatively up at Rs 2,011.32 crore from Rs 1,973.95 crore on Tuesday.