Sensex plunges 273 points as bears hammer down stocks

Last Updated: Thu, Feb 21, 2013 08:42 hrs

Due to sustained selling almost across the board, the market has plunged deeper into the red this afternoon, sending the key indices Sensex and Nifty to sharply lower levels.

Concerns about near term economic outlook and caution ahead of the Union Budget appear to be prompting investors to indulge in some heavy selling at several blue chip counters.

The Sensex is down 273 points or 1.39% at 19,369.70, while the Nifty is down with a loss of 80.55 points or 1.36% at 5862.50.

Metal stocks continue to bear the brunt of the onslaught. Realty, capital goods, bank, FMCG, oil and PSU stocks are also mostly down in negative territory with sharp losses.

Automobile and power stocks are also reeling under pressure. Healthcare and information technology stocks, which found some support earlier in the day, are drifting down a bit now. A few stocks from the consumer durables space are bucking the trend.

Jindal Steel & Power is down nearly 4%. Jaiprakash Associates, Tata Steel, Sesa Goa, ICICI Bank and IDFC are trading lower by 3% - 3.6%.

Reliance Infrastructure, DLF, Hindalco, Hindustan Unilever, Tata Motors and Larsen & Toubro are down 2% - 2.6%. Axis Bank, Punjab National Bank, State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, ONGC, Ranbaxy Laboratories, BHEL, Maruti Suzuki, Reliance Industries, Coal India, ITC and Siemens are also down with sharp losses.

Bajaj Auto, Bharti Airtel, HCL Technologies, Power Grid Corporation, Cipla and GAIL India are bucking the trend and holding on in positive territory with modest gains.

Shriram Transport Finance is down 7.5% on huge volumes. According to reports, US private equity firm TPG Capital has raised $305 million by selling about half of its stake in commercial vehicle financier Shriram Transport Finance Co Ltd. TPG, which owned about 20% of Shriram Transport before the sale, sold the shares at Rs 715 each to a large number of overseas and domestic institutional investors, the reports suggest.

Sun TV Network has lost around 6.3%. Pantaloon Retail, Tata Global Beverage, United Breweries, JSW Steel, Aurobindo Pharma, Yes Bank, Union Bank of India, Mahindra & Mahindra Financial Services and Havells India are also down sharply.

ABB Ltd shares are down more than 3% at Rs 591. The company has posted a net profit of Rs 16.77 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2012 as compared to Rs 64.12 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2011. Total income decreased from Rs 2226.92 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2011 to Rs 2085.10 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2012.

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