Sensex snaps 3-day winning run, falls 394 points on worries over pace of economic recovery

NEW DELHI: Tracking the selloff in global peers, benchmark equity indices tumbled on Thursday as comments from the US Federal Reserve worried investors about the economic recovery.

Sentiments on Dalal Street were hit as Fed policymakers’ comments highlighted uncertainties over the US recovery. They said additional easing may be needed because a rebound in employment was already slowing.

Meanwhile, India continued to report the highest number of virus cases. The patient count has surpassed 28 lakh mark with over 54,000 deaths.

Indications from World Bank that it may lower growth projections for India also played in people’s mind.

The 30-share pack Sensex snapped three-day winning run and dropped 394 points to 38,220 as investors dumped some of the largest companies. RIL, private banks and telcos were the biggest drags on the index. NSE flagship Nifty plunged 96 points to close at 11,312.

India VIX, the measure of fear and volatility in the market, snapped the three day losing streak and advanced 3.94 per cent to 20.04. Some bouts of volatility could be attributed to Thursday being expiry day for weekly futures.

“Indian indices along with global markets traded in the red today, on the back of US Fed reserve’s grim July meeting minutes. The Fed reserve cast doubts on the nascent recovery of the labor market seen in the previous months and its sustainability. Although there was nothing new in the minutes, markets reacted negatively to it,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

Among Nifty stocks, NTPC was the biggest gainer, up 6.87 per cent to Rs 101.15 as investors are still puffed on its better than expected Q1 numbers and reported entry into discom business. Its PSU peers ONGC, PowerGrid, Coal India and BPCL were among the other top gainers.

Nifty snip 20Agencies

Top 5 Nifty gainers & losers

Shrugging the trend in bluechips, broader market indices continued their upward momentum. Nifty Smallcap climbed 0.66 per cent and Nifty Midcap 0.81 per cent, outperforming their headline peers. Both indices extended their gaining streak to the fourth day.

Sun TV, Tata Power, Future Retail, Kalpataru Power, GNFC and Aster DM Healthcare were among top gainers in the broader market space, rising in the range of 5-9 per cent. Meanwhile, MOIL, Gujarat Alkali, Vakrangee, Godrej Properties, Ajanta Pharma and M&M Financials were top losers down up to 4 per cent.

“Noticeable traction in the broader space is offering ample opportunities to the traders. We reiterate our view to focus more on the selection of stocks and trade management citing overnight risk.”

“Smallcaps are seeing really good rallies in the last few days. People are already invested in large companies and now they are looking out for stocks from the small cap. My advice for them is investing with stock specific selection and in companies with good fundamentals,” said Rahul Sharma, Equity99 Advisors.

Multiplex stocks were again in the limelight with Inox Leisure surging over 10 per cent. This led Nifty Media to emerge as the biggest sectoral gainer of the day, up 3.11 per cent. This comes on top of a over 5 per cent rally on Wednesday. Nifty Metal also added over a per cent. Nifty Bank and Nifty Financial Service were the biggest losers, down over a per cent.

Market breadth was tilted in favour of gainers with 1,595 stocks closing the day in the green while 1,169 names closed in the red. Number of securities that hit 52-week high was 176 and 53 kissed their yearly lows–most of them from the microcap universe. Over 400 names hit the upper circuit and 189 lower circuit limit.


European markets were also trading with cuts, with stocks in the UK, Germany and France trading down over a per cent. Asian markets bled even more with main indices of Taiwan, and South Korea plunging over 3 per cent. Stocks in Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and China closed over per cent down each.

Let’s prepare for tomorrow:

  • Forex data: RBI will release foreign exchange data for the week ended August 14, which will be eyed by traders especially those trading in currency derivatives.
  • RBI minutes: RBI released minutes of its last policy meet post market hours. This could have a bearing on stocks from certain sectors.
  • Q1 earnings: Apart from a number of smaller companies, Indiabulls Housing Finance, OilIndia Limited, Rossari Biotech and Union Bank will come out with their numbers.