Mumbai: The Sensex on Monday crashed by 281 points to close at nearly one-month low as debt problems in Spain again came to the fore, sparking off a fresh wave of risk-aversion across global markets.
After opening lower on weak Asian cues, the BSE benchmark index closed with a loss of 281.09 points, or 1.64 percent, to end below the 17,000 mark as all sectoral indices, led by metal and realty, suffered losses.
Across the market, nearly 1,800 stocks ended lower while 990 scrips gained. In the 30-share Sensex, 28 stocks, led by Maruti and Sterlite that lost over 5 percent each, closed lower as across-the-board selling was seen.
Sensex's losses were extended by ICICI bank, HDFC Bank, ITC, Infosys, Tata Motors and RIL. In broader market, retail stocks fell in the 3-8 percent after reports said UPA ally Samajwadi Party's chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, among others, has opposed a move to allow FDI in retail sector.
"There are doubts about government's ability to push through pending reforms amid persistent opposition," said Amar Ambani, Head of Research, IIFL.
The trading sentiment was negative throughout as global stocks crashed on reports that Spain's Murcia region could apply to access government's funds within days of another region, Valencia, planning to take the same route. Later in the day, reports said the Spanish economy contracted by 0.4 percent in April-June period, deepening fears.
Key Asian benchmark indices in Japan, Hong Kong and China closed with losses in the 2-3 percent range while European markets, including France, Germany and the UK, were trading with sharp losses of 2 percent each in afternoon deals.
"The selling pressure was triggered following the weakness in the global markets induced by renewed economic worries related to Spain," said Nidhi Sarswat, Senior, Research Analyst, Bonanza Portfolio.
The 50-share National Stock Exchange index Nifty lost 87.15 points, or 1.67 percent to 5,117.95.
Explaining the slump in global stock market, Dipen Shah, Head of PERCENTG (Private Client Group) Research, Kotak Securities, said the markets feared that Spain might become the fourth Eurozone member to need a full international bailout.
Major losers from the Sensex pack were Maruti (5.65 percent), Sterlite (5.19 percent), Hindalco (4.67 percent), GAIL India (4.52 percent), BHEL (3.95 percent), Tata Steel (3.02 percent), Bharti Airtel (3.31 percent) and Tata Motors (3.29 percent).
Jindal Steel (2.90 percent), ICICI Bank (2.41 percent), Tata Power (2.16 percent), SBI (1.97 percent), Wipro (1.86 percent), Bajaj Auto (1.85 percent) and Coal India (1.59 percent) ended with sharp losses.
Among Sensex, the lone gainers were Dr Reddy's (up 1.10 percent) and Cipla (0.43 percent).
In the sectoral indices, the BSE-Metal dipped by 3.35 percent, followed by the BSE-Realty (2.87 percent), the BSE-Power (2.70 percent), the BSE-Auto (2.40 percent), the BSE-CG (1.97 percent), the BSE-Bankex (1.97 percent), BSE-CD (1.72 percent) and BSE-PSU (1.59 percent).
The total turnover remained weak at Rs 1,636.47 crore from Rs 1,727.85 crore last Friday.
Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) pumped in Rs 178.11 crore last Friday as per as per provisional data released by the stock exchanges.
First Published: Monday, July 23, 2012, 12:55