Sensex tumbles 151 points

Mumbai: The BSE barometer Sensex tumbled today by 151 points ICICI Bank, Hero MotoCorp and SBI leading the losses as a weak rupee, disappointing earnings and negative global cues dampened investor sentiment. The 30-share Sensex, which opened lower, remained in the negative territory throughout and finally settled at 17,151.19, a fall of 150.72 points or 0.87 per cent, extending the losses for the second day in a row.

Brokers said higher fiscal deficit, rising inflation and lower industrial production data amid a sustained fall in the rupee to more than 4-month low made affected the market sentiment. Sharmila Joshi, Head Equity, Fairwealth Securities said: " Indian markets opened in the red today. This was after the US markets had a negative closing yesterday as investor sentiment was hurt due to the weak economic data released by US and Eurozone. Rupee also opened down as worries about India?s twin deficits persist."

A lack of clear direction amid absence of any positive signal also impacted buying. The weak rupee also exacerbated the fall as investors thought the fall in domestic currency would exert pressure on the economy amid forecasts of further fall in the next 6-12 months. Selling was widespread that 11 out of 13 sectoral indices closed in the red while only BSE-IT and BSE-Teck ended in the green with auto, metal, banking, PSUs, realty and power segment suffering the most.

Two-wheeler giant, Hero MotoCorp was the top loser from the Sensex pack with a fall of 7.69 per cent amid lower-than-expected earnings. Other auto stocks like Tata Motor, Maruti Suzuki, Bajaj Auto and M&M also finished with marked losses. ITC, RIL, Tata Steel, L&T, HDFC, Coal India and Jindal Steel were also at the receiving end.

The 50-share Nifty also dipped by 50.75 points or 0.97 per cent to a 4-week low of 5,188.40. Contrary to the market sentiment, IT shares attracted good buying support due to fall in the rupee value as a weak domestic currency will boost margins. Wipro rose by 1.93 per cent, followed by TCS (1 per cent) and Infosys (0.53 per cent).

On the global front, Asian markets closed weak today after disappointing data from both sides of the Atlantic rekindled concerns about the strength of the global economic recovery. Key benchmark indices in Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan ended with minor losses while from China closed with small gains. Japanese financial markets remain closed for public holidays today and tomorrow.

Out of the 30-share Sensex pack, 23 scrips finished with losses while only 7 ended with gains. Losers from the Sensex include Maruti Suzuki (3.06 pc), Tata Steel (3.00 pc), ICICI Bank (2.74 pc), SBI (2.54 pc), Coal India (2.41 pc), DLF (2.37 pc), Tata Power (2.28 pc), Bajaj Auto (2.05 pc) and Jindal Steel (2.03 pc). Others major losers were NTPC (1.75 pc), M&M (1.35 pc), Larsen (1.28 pc), Gail India (1.26 pc), Tata Motors (1.08 pc) and ITC (1.00 pc).

On the other hand, gainers included HUL (2.02 pc), BHEL (0.60 pc) and HDFC Bank (0.50 pc). Among the sectoral indices, the BSE-Auto fell by 2.43 per cent followed by BSE-Metal (1.75 pc), BSE-Bankex (1.74 pc), BSE-PSU (1.45 pc), BSE-Realty (1.43 pc) and BSE-Power (1.36 pc).

The overall market breadth continued to remain negative 1,719 stocks ended in the red while 1,055 that finished in the green. The total turnover improved to Rs 1,921.48 crore from Rs 1,805.40 crore on Wednesday. Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) picked up shares worth Rs 237.47 crore on Wednesday as per provisional data as per stock exchanges after pumping in Rs 540.70 crore on April 30.