Indian stock benchmarks traded lower on deal opening Thursday, based on signals from global markets. Asian stocks fell as investors weighed in on the latest developments in the war in Ukraine and more aggressive comments from US Federal Reserve officials. Rising crude oil prices — above $122 a barrel — also kept investors on edge.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said Moscow planned to convert gas sales to “unfriendly” countries into rubles, pushing European gas prices soaring amid concerns that the move would worsen the region’s energy crisis.
US Federal Reserve policymakers signaled more aggressive measures to curb unacceptably high inflation.
At home, the 30-share BSE Sensex fell 360 points, or 0.65 percent, to 57,325, while the broader NSE Nifty fell 107 points, or 0.62 percent, to 17,139 in early trading.
Mid and small cap stocks traded positively as the Nifty Midcap 100 index rose 0.54 percent and small cap stocks rose 0.18 percent.
Seven of the 15 sector meters – compiled by the National Stock Exchange – were in the red. Nifty Bank and Nifty Financial Services underperformed the index, falling 1.30 percent and 1.18 percent respectively. However, Nifty Metal and Nifty IT were up 1.19 percent and 0.45 percent, respectively.
On the stock-specific front, Kotak Mahindra Bank was the biggest loser as the stock cracked 3.42 percent to Rs 1,709.20. Titan, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and Bajaj Finance were also among the laggards.
Overall market size was strong, however, as 1,541 shares rose while 1,084 shares fell on BSE.
On the 30-share BSE index, Kotak Bank, Titan, ICICI Bank, HDFC twins (HDFC and HDFC Bank), Bajaj Finance and IndusInd Bank were among the biggest losers.
In contrast, Dr. Reddy’s, ITC, TCS, Tata Steel and UltraTech Cement in green.
Sensex was down 304 points or 0.53 percent on Wednesday to close at 57,685, while Nifty had moved 70 points or 0.40 percent lower to settle at 17,246.