Intensifying Ukraine crisis and a jump in oil prices to seven-year high levels sent domestic stocks tumbling on Monday.
US equities had settled lower on Friday and investors at home were cautious amid elections in Goa and the second phase of polling in Uttar Pradesh. The market was also unsure of how India’s likely biggest IPO by LIC would influence the secondary market.
At 9.21 am, the BSE Sensex was trading 1,272.79 points, or 2.19 per cent, lower at 56,880.13. Nifty50 was trading 1,272.79 points, or 2.19 per cent, lower at 56,880.13. Nifty50 was down 379.10 points or 2.18 per cent at 16,995.65. Midcap and smallcap indices bled up to 4 per cent.
Sandip Sabharwal of asksandipsabharwal.com said that the market texture should have changed a bit earlier, given the fact that there were several macro concerns, the way commodities have moved, inflation and what the US Fed is likely to do.
“Till the time the global uncertainty looms over, we are likely to have challenging scenarios in the market where the volatility is also expected to stay on the higher end,” said Sameet Chavan of Angel Broking.
Mahindra & Mahindra declined 4.3 per cent to Rs 817.80. ICICI Bank, HDFC and SBI fell 4 per cent each. UltraTech Cement, Dr Reddy’s Labs, L&T, Tata Steel, Bajaj Finance and IndusInd Bank declined over 3 per cent each. TCS was the lone Sensex gainer, rising 1 per cent to Rs 3,731.60.
Earlier in the day, Brent oil prices hit the highest in more than seven years on fears that a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine could trigger sanctions that would disrupt exports from the world’s top producer. Brent crude futures were at $95.56 a barrel, up $1.12, or 1.2 per cent, in early trade after earlier hitting a peak of $96.16, the highest since October 2014.Asian stock markets fell as the United States on Sunday said it reaffirmed a pledge to defend “every inch” of NATO territory. But domestic stocks were worst hit.
At home, voting for assembly elections in Goa and parts of Uttar Pradesh began on Monday. The Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) is the incumbent government in both states.
Meanwhile, Reuters reported that LIC could potentially raise nearly $8 billion in IPO, dwarfing the biggest IPO in Asia’s third-largest economy by a considerable margin.