Equity markets buckle under Covid scare – The Hindu BusinessLine*

Clipped from: https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/markets/equity-markets-buckle-under-covid-scare/article66298372.ece

Sensex down 981 points, Nifty breaches 18,000-mark

The bloodbath in the market had shaved off ₹5.5-lakh crore of investors wealth on Friday 

Rapidly rising Covid cases in China and concerns about its possible adverse global economic impact had a ripple effect on the Indian equity markets with benchmark indices BSE Sensex and Nifty50 plunging 1.61 per cent (or 981 points) and 1.77 per cent (or 321 points), respectively on Friday.

Equity markets have tanked in the last seven trading sessions, shaving off ₹16-lakh crore of investors’ wealth, on global cues, including sudden change in Japanese monetary policy statement and fears of rising Covid cases globally.

The Sensex dipped below the psychological 60,000-mark and closed at 59,845. The bellwether index has lost a whopping 1,954 points in the last seven trading sessions after months of bull run amid gloomy global outlook. Nifty, which took 45 days to reach the 18,800-mark, dropped below 18,000 in just four days flat.

The bloodbath in the market had shaved off ₹5.5-lakh crore of investors wealth on Friday with the BSE market capitalisation dipping to ₹275.01-lakh crore from ₹280.55-lakh crore in the previous session. It had hitt a record high of ₹291-lakh crore on December 14.

Shrikant Chouhan, Head of Equity Research, Kotak Securities, said globally markets remained volatile as they reacted to reported rise in Covid cases in China and concern on possible recession will continue to influence the global equity market in the near term. The hawkish tone adopted by global central banks also fueled all-round selling. The bearish trend has pulled over 560 stocks to lower circuit and 260 stocks at 52-week low, against 120 stocks at upper circuit and 61 stocks at 52-week high.

ICICI Securities, in a report, noted that broader markets came under severe selling pressure after a sudden change in Japanese monetary policy statement on Monday.

The Nifty witnessed one of the biggest declines since June as it moved below levels of 18,000 and closed the week near 17,800, losing almost 2.5 per cent. “Meanwhile, the midcap and small cap space succumbed sharply as they declined almost 5 per cent and 8 per cent, respectively,” per the report.

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