Mumbai: Benchmark indices Sensex and Nifty plunged over 1 per cent to close at three-month lows on Friday due to selling in banking, financials, utilities and oil shares triggered by an unfavourable report on Adani group as well as FIIs taking a cautious stance ahead of the Union budget.
Continuing its decline for a second session, the 30-share BSE benchmark tanked 874.16 points or 1.45 per cent, its biggest single day loss in more than a month, to settle at 59,330.90. This is the lowest closing level since October 21.
During the day, Sensex plunged 1,230.36 points or 2.04 per cent to 58,974.70.
The broader NSE Nifty fell 287.60 points or 1.61 per cent to end at a three-month low of 17,604.35, also marking its worst single-day fall since December 23, 2022.
“Indian benchmark equity gauges Sensex and Nifty hit their over three month lows on Friday, dragged by massive selling mainly in Adani group and banking stocks. Adani shares were in the line of the fire following the Hindenburg report accusing the group of serious irregularities,” said Devarsh Vakil, Deputy Head of Retail Research, HDFC Securities.
Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services also said that the sharp slump in the Indian market was triggered by an unfavourable research report on Asia’s richest promoter group companies.
“This is also affecting the banking stocks even though the results of the sector are optimistic due to high group lending, indicating potential risk. PSU banks are the most impacted compared to private banks owing to high exposure. The FIIs’ cautious stance ahead of the Union Budget and FOMC meetings also fuelled the collapse.”
From the Sensex pack, SBI fell the most by 5.03 per cent. ICICI Bank by 4.41 per cent, IndusInd Bank by 3.43 per cent, Axis Bank by 2.07 per cent, Kotak Bank by 2.03 per cent, HDFC Bank by 1.96 per cent, Reliance by 1.9 per cent and HDFC by 1.87 per cent.
Bucking the trend, auto stocks Tata Motors and Mahindra & Mahindra closed with gains. Tata Motors, which returned to profitability in the third quarter of FY23, rose the most by 6.34 per cent among Sensex shares. Mahindra & Mahindra advanced 0.71 per cent.
In the broader market, the BSE smallcap gauge tanked 1.89 per cent and midcap index fell by 1.29 per cent.
Among sectoral indices, utilities tanked 7.34 per cent, power tumbled 6.79 per cent while oil & gas (5.75 per cent), energy (5.22 per cent), telecommunication (3.79 per cent), commodities (3.27 per cent), bankex (3.06 per cent) and financial services (2.48 per cent) also declined.
Adani group stocks took a beating falling up to 20 per cent after the US-based investment research firm Hindenburg Research made damaging allegations.
The group’s flagship Adani Enterprises, which launched the Rs 20,000 crore FPO on Friday, tanked 18.52 per cent. Adani Ports plunged 16 per cent, Adani Power by 5 per cent, Adani Green Energy by 19.99 per cent, and Adani Total Gas by 20 per cent.
In two days, the Adani group firms have lost a whopping Rs 4,17,824.79 crore from their market valuation. The market valuation of Adani Total Gas plummeted Rs 1,04,580.93 crore while that of Adani Transmission by Rs 83,265.95 crore.
Adani Enterprises market capitalisation fell by Rs 77,588.47 crore, Adani Green Energy lost Rs 67,962.91 crore and Adani Ports by Rs 35,048.25 crore.
The market valuation of Ambuja Cements declined by Rs 23,311.47 crore, Adani Power by Rs 10,317.31 crore, ACC by Rs 8,490.8 crore and Adani Wilmar by Rs 7,258.7 crore.
Elsewhere in Asia, equity markets in Seoul, Tokyo and Hong Kong ended in the green.
European benchmarks were trading higher during mid-session deals. Markets in the US had ended higher on Thursday.
Stock markets were closed on Thursday on account of Republic Day.
International oil benchmark Brent crude climbed 1.35 per cent to USD 88.65 per barrel.
Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) offloaded shares worth Rs 2,393.94 crore on Wednesday, according to exchange data.
“Traders will now gear up for the next 2-big catalysts; interest-rate decision from the Federal Reserve to trickle in on February 1, and the Union Budget for 2023-24 to be presented on the same day,” said Prashanth Tapse – Research Analyst, Senior VP (Research), Mehta Equities Ltd.