Sensex plummets over 1,200 points, NSE tanks 343 points on first day of financial year; Tech Mahindra top loser, crashes over 9%

The stock market closed trading on Wednesday on a negative note. 1 April was the start of a new financial year for the bourses. All the sectoral indices ended lower. BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices shed 1-2 percent.

The benchmark Sensex plummeted over 1,203 points on Wednesday, in line with a global selloff as investors fretted over the impact of prolonged worldwide lockdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Starting the new financial year on a poor note, the 30-share BSE barometer slumped 1,203.18 points or 4.08 percent to finish at 28,265.31.

Similarly, the NSE Nifty tanked 343.95 points, or 4 percent, to close at 8,253.80.

Tech Mahindra was the top loser in the Sensex pack, crashing over 9 percent, followed by Kotak Bank, Axis Bank, TCS, Infosys and HUL.

On the other hand, Hero MotoCorp, Bajaj Auto, Bajaj Finance and Titan were the gainers.

A day after logging healthy gains, Nifty ended the session with a huge loss of 3.97 percent at 8254.75 back in the negative territory,tracking weak global cues, said Sumeet Bagadia, Executive Director, Choice Broking. Nifty opened on gap down note and continue the same sentiment throughout the session & given closing below 50 percent. The retracement level i.e. 8272 of previous up move now the support comes at 8100 level i.e 61.8 percent FR level. As technicelly support also comes at 8,100 while resistance comes at 8,600.00. If index manages to give breakdown below 8100 level then we can see 7900& 7600 levels

According to traders, domestic equities plunged in tandem with global stocks as no respite from the coronavirus pandemic seemed in sight.

 Sensex plummets over 1,200 points, NSE tanks 343 points on first day of financial year; Tech Mahindra top loser, crashes over 9%

Representative image. Reuters

Extensive lockdowns to contain the spread of the virus have severely hit business outlook, they said.

Around the world, total number of infected cases surged past 8.6 lakh, while deaths have crossed 42,000.

The number of COVID-19 cases climbed to 1,637 in India, while the death toll rose to 38, according to the Health Ministry.

"For the month of April, macro risk appetite driven by news flow around potential peaking of fresh COVID-19 cases would be the key driving force for foreign flows," said S Hariharan, Head - Sales Trading, Emkay Global Financial Services told PTI.

On the global front, bourses in Hong Kong, Tokyo, Seoul and Shanghai plunged up to 4 percent.

Asian equities in March see biggest foreign outflows since 2008

Asian equities recorded their biggest foreign outflow in at least 12 years in March, hit by the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on businesses across the region, with most factories shuttered to contain its spread.

Overseas investors sold a net $33.3 billion worth of regional equities last month, the highest since at least January 2008, data from stock exchanges in India, Indonesia, the Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam showed, Reuters said.

A shortage of dollars as many institutional investors scrambled to safer currencies to hedge against volatility also hit flows into emerging Asian equities, analysts said.

“We have seen fund flows coming out of EM, both from bonds and equity. Majority of this is a flight to safety as the COVID-19 cases have rebounded from developed markets into Asia specifically,” said Paul Sandhu, head of multi-assets quant solutions at BNP Paribas Asset Management in Hong Kong.

“However,this won’t last as we believe funds will return to Asia equities, in particular, as more is known on the extent of the COVID-19 impact in the U.S.”

Taiwan and South Korean equities led the region, with outflows of more than $10 billion each in the last month.

South Korea’s March exports slipped 0.2% from a year earlier, data showed on Wednesday, as the coronavirus affected factory production and supply chains. South Korea’s nationwide infections are just below 10,000, making it the largest outbreak in Asia outside China.

Indian markets saw an outflow of about $8.3 billion, with its equity markets pulled down by a 21-day nationwide lockdown, which has raised fears of a devastating impact on an already-slowing economy.

Indonesia, and Vietnam also had outflows of about $400 million each in the last month.

In the first quarter, MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan plunged about 20%, registering the biggest quarterly decline since September 2008.

The index fell 12% in March, the biggest monthly decline since October 2008.

Rajat Agarwal, strategist at Societe Generale, said the sharp decline in the market has started to price in a much lower earnings growth than the current consensus expectation.

--With inputs from agencies

Updated Date: Apr 01, 2020 16:24:04 IST

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