Sensex ends 173 pts lower, Nifty below 8,800; IT, bank stocks slip

The economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic continued to weigh on investor sentiment

Mumbai: Equity benchmark Sensex ended over 173 points lower on Wednesday after a highly volatile session as investors remained jittery on concerns over the Covid-19 pandemic.

Plunging over 1,300 points from the day's high, the 30-share BSE barometer ended 173.25 points or 0.58 per cent lower at 29,893.96. It hit an intra-day high of 31,227.97.

Similarly, the NSE Nifty closed 43.45 points, or 0.49 per cent, down at 8,748.75.

TCS was the top loser in the Sensex pack, falling over 3 per cent, followed by Titan, ICICI Bank, SBI, ITC and Bharti Airtel.

On the other hand, Sun Pharma, NTPC, IndusInd Bank and Bajaj Finance were among the top gainers.

According to Paras Bothra, President of Equity Research, Ashika Stock Broking, volatility in the markets was on account of speculation that the central government was mulling lockdown extension beyond April 14.

Further, traders said Indian markets moved in sync with global benchmarks as worries over the economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic continued to weigh on investor sentiment.

Bourses in Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Seoul ended in the red, while Tokyo closed on a positive note.

Benchmark exchanges Europe were trading around 2 per cent lower in the morning session.

Meanwhile, the rupee provisionally settled 70 paise lower at 76.34 against the US dollar.

Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, slipped marginally to USD 31.85 per barrel.

The death toll due to the novel coronavirus rose to 149 and the number of cases to 5,194 in the country on Wednesday, according to the Health Ministry.

Global tally of the infections has crossed 14 lakh, with over 82,000 deaths.

( Source : PTI )
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