New Delhi: Giving up early gains, benchmark Sensex tumbled 287 points to end at 34,010.76 today on widespread selling in auto, metal, PSU, capital goods, realty and banking counters.
Shares of Punjab National Bank (PNB) continued to reel under selling pressure for the third consecutive day after the detection of a massive Rs 11,400-crore fraud. It ended lower by 2.10 percent.
The BSE 30-share barometer, after a robust start, advanced to a high of 34,508.24 in morning trade. However, it succumbed to across-the-board profit-booking in the later part of the session to touch a low of 33,957.33, before settling 286.71 points, or 0.84 percent down at 34,010.76.
The NSE Nifty settled the day 93.20 points or 0.88 percent lower at 10,452.30 after shuttling between 10,612.90 and 10,434.05.
The Indian indices declined sharply in the last hour of trade with Nifty PSU bank index falling over 2 percent. Among the major losers, Bank of Baroda lost over 3 percent while State Bank of India, IDBI and Syndicate Bank ended 2-3 percent lower in the banking segment.
Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) sold shares worth Rs 240.29 crore, while domestic institutional investors bought shares worth Rs 49.92 crore yesterday, as per provisional data.
Sentiment turned weak after the country's trade gap soared to $16.3 billion in January on account of a 26.1 percent increase in imports to $40.68 billion due to increased inbound shipments of crude oil, as per data released by the Commerce ministry. India's exports grew by 9 percent to $24.38 billion in January, helped by a healthy growth in shipments of chemicals, engineering goods and petroleum products.
In other market news, global index provider MSCI has slammed Indian exchanges’ decision to terminate licensing and data-feed agreements with their global counterparts. MSCI, whose indices, widely used by passive investors, help channel billions of dollars into Indian markets, said the concerted announcement by three domestic exchanges was “anti-completive” and would restrict access to the Indian market.
In the global markets, most Asian indices were shut on Friday due to Lunar New Year holidays. However, Japan’s Nikkei rose 1.2 percent. US dollar slipped below its January low against a basket of major currencies to reach its lowest since late 2014.