Sensex crashes over 850 points as coronavirus fears take hold; Nifty below 9,550

NEW DELHI: Equity indices started with steep losses on Friday as the benchmark BSE sensex plunged over 850 points tracking a global selloff as coronavirus cases continued to surge. Sensex crashed 865 points or 2.58 per cent to 32,673; while the broader NSE Nifty cracked 357 points or 3.61 per cent to 9,545 in early trade.
Major lagards in the BSE pack included IndusInd Bank, ONGC, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Bajaj Finance, Axis Bank and HDFC Bank with their stocks falling as much as 6.41 per cent.
On NSE, sub-indices Nifty Private Bank and Bank dived as much as 3.97 per cent.
On the global front, other Asian markets fell sharply too after Wall Street and oil tumbled over growing concerns that a resurgence of coronavirus infections could stunt the pace of recovery in economies reopening from lockdowns.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank more than 1,800 points and the S&P 500 dropped 5.9%, its worst day since mid-March, when stocks went through repeated harrowing falls as the virus lockdowns began.
Analysts said that the selling comes as coronavirus cases rise in the US, with some of the increase likely tied to the reopening of businesses and the lifting of stay-at-home orders.
Oil futures slumped for a second consecutive trading session due to worries about weak global energy demand, which weighed on the currencies of oil producers and countries that rely on exporting commodities.
The US Federal Reserve released a gloomy economic outlook at the end of its two-day monetary policy meeting on Wednesday. Chairman Jerome Powell warned of a “long road” to recovery.
India’s Covid-19 cases climbed to the fourth highest in the world, overtaking the UK, even as the country reported another highest single-day rise in new infections and deaths. The number of fresh cases crossed 11,000 for the first time while deaths were close to 400, having gone past 8,000 in all a day earlier.
(With agency inputs)

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