New Delhi, Feb 21: The BSE benchmark Sensex on Thursday suffered the biggest single day fall in nearly nine months by falling over 317 points to the year's lowest level on all-round selling amid weak global cues.
The Sensex tumbled 317.39 points, or 1.62 per cent, to 19,325.36, recording its biggest single day loss since May last year. The index had gained 174.60 in the last three sessions.
Similarly, the broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty fell also below the 5,900-level by losing 90.80 points, or 1.53 per cent, to 5,852.25, after touching the day's low of 5,844.40.
Brokers said heavy capital outflow before the budget on fears of imposition of taxes to narrow budget deficit and a weak global trend on renewed concerns that US Federal Reserve's policy-tightening moves to reduce liquidity influenced the market sentiment.
“The markets turned distinctively weak on Thursday and closed at the lowest levels in 2013. We believe this was largely due to the weakness in global markets,” said Dipen Shah, Head of PCG (Private Client Group) Research, Kotak Securities. The minutes of the last Fed meeting have raised concerns that, the Fed may withdraw the monetary stimulus if there is some improvement in the economic data. This has raised concerns about fund flows across asset classes, including emerging markets, he added.
The US Dow Jones index closed 0.8 per cent down last night while losses at Nasdaq were sharper at 1.55 per cent as foreign investors seen profit booking and taking out money from equities and commodities.
The current fall in domestic markets was led by stocks of metal, banks and realty sectors with 29 stocks of the 30-BSE index kitty ending with losses. GAIL India was the lone gainer by adding 0.09 per cent to Rs 338.10.
The Sensex heavyweights Reliance Industries dropped 1.78 per cent to Rs. 859.20, after a 3.1 per cent surge yesterday and Infosys lost 0.48 per cent to Rs. 2,806.75.
Among others, ICICI Bank, Hindalco, Jindal Steel, Larsen and Toubro, Bharti Airtel, BHEL, HDFC Bank, Mahindra and Mahindra, Maruti Suzuki, Tata Motors, State Bank of India and Sterlite Industries fell sharply.