Sensex plunges nearly 200 points in early trade

Sensex plunges nearly 200 points in early trade

Last Updated: Mon, Mar 18, 2013 04:19 hrs
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The Indian stock market opened with a big negative gap this morning, as investors indulged in some heavy selling almost across the board, tracking weak global cues. Worries about European economy following an unprecedented levy on deposits in Cyprus triggered the sell-off in Asian markets, setting up a dismal start for stocks back home.

The BSE benchmark Sensex, which plummeted to 19,232.23, losing nearly 200 points in the process, is currently down 162 points or 0.64% at 19,265.56. The Nifty index of the National Stock Exchange is down 47.70 points or 0.8% at 5824.90.

Metal, realty, oil, bank and PSU stocks opened sharply lower and are still mostly down with notable losses. Capital goods, power and automobile stocks have recovered some lost ground thanks to support at lower levels.

Information technology stocks opened on a fairly steady note, but have retreated a bit subsequently. Select healthcare and FMCG stocks are finding good support.

Coal India is down nearly 5% at Rs 304. The stock is trading ex-dividend today. Sterlite Industries (down 2.1%), Tata Steel (down 1.8%), Jindal Steel & Power (down 1.4%) and Hindalco (down 1.6%) are also trading sharply lower.

Bharti Airtel has lost around 2.2% following the telecom regulatory body directing the company to stop offering 3G services in those circle where it does not hold a valid licence.

ICICI Bank is down 2.2% at Rs 1044. HDFC Bank is down nearly a percent at Rs 633, while State Bank of India is down with a loss of 0.8% at Rs 2244.

Tata Power has shed a little over 2%. Dr Reddy's Laboratories, Tata Motors, ONGC, Maruti Suzuki, Larsen & Toubro, GAIL India and Infosys are down 1% - 1.4%. Reliance Industries, Tata Consultancy Services, Bajaj Auto, BHEL, Wipro, Mahindra & Mahindra and HDFC are also trading notably lower.

Axis Bank is down with a loss of 2.6% at Rs 1304. BPCL, Sesa Goa, IDFC, DLF, Jaiprakash Associates, Reliance Infrastructure and Punjab National Bank are also trading notably lower.

Bucking the weak trend, Siemens, Hindustan Unilever, ACC, Ultratech Cement, Lupin, Cipla and Sun Pharmaceutical Industries are trading in positive territory, gaining 0.5% - 1.3%.

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