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Coronavirus Fallout: Sensex Sheds 2,919 Pts, Nifty Near 3-Year Low

The Indian currency opened weaker compared to Wednesday, with the rupee opening at 74.28 against the US dollar.

Updated
Business
2 min read
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The BSE Sensex plunged over 2,919 points on Thursday in its biggest one-day fall in absolute terms as the coronavirus pandemic wreaked havoc on global markets.

After plummeting by over 3,000 points during the day, the biggest fall in a decade, the 30-share index settled at 2,919.26 points or 8.18 percent lower at 32,778.14. The NSE Nifty similarly slumped 868.25 points or 8.30 percent to close at 9,590.15.

Investor wealth worth over Rs 9 lakh crore was wiped off in early trade as the markets crashed.

All Sensex components ended in the red. SBI was the top loser, followed by ONGC, Axis Bank, ITC, Titan, Bajaj Auto, TCS and IndusInd Bank.

All sectoral indices on the National Stock Exchange opened with losses.

The fall in markets come amid fears globally over the coronavirus outbreak, which was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on Wednesday.

Rupee Falls Sharply

The rupee pared early morning losses as state-run banks sold dollars on behalf on the Reserve Bank of India, BloombergQuint reported. The currency had fallen to an intra-day low of 74.33. Traders said that State banks have been selling US dollars at levels of 74.20.

The Indian currency had opened weaker compared to Wednesday, with the rupee opening at 74.28 against the US dollar as compared to Wednesday’s close of 73.64.

The currency now trades at its lowest level since October 2018.

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Aviation Stocks Tank

InterGlobe Aviation Ltd, the operator of India’s largest airline IndiGo, fell as much as 10.37 percent to Rs 1,040 on the National Stock Exchange, the lowest level since 13 December 2018.

The airline had warned of coronavirus having a ‘material impact’ on its quarterly earnings as bookings have fallen over the last 15 to 20 days.

Shares of SpiceJet Ltd too fell as much as 18.8 percent to Rs 49, the lowest level since November 2015.

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Stocks, Crude Hammered as Trump Europe Ban Fans Recession Fears

Equities and oil prices fell through the floor again on Thursday, 12 March, after Donald Trump banned all travel from Europe to the US for a month to fight the coronavirus, ramping up fears the global economy will careen into recession, reported AFP.

The news came after the World Health Organization officially labelled the outbreak a pandemic and hit out at "alarming levels of inaction" for its spread. The US president said that the ban would be in place for 30 days.

Asian equity markets, already deep in the red in reaction to the WHO announcement, cratered after Trump's address.

Tokyo dropped more than five percent, while Hong Kong finished the morning down 3.8 percent and Sydney collapsed almost seven percent, with Bangkok around eight per cent down. Seoul, Wellington, Mumbai and Taipei were off more than four percent, with Singapore and Jakarta shedding more than three percent.

(With inputs from BloombergQuint.)

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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