Major benchmark indices are trading deep red during the opening session following an overnight global sell-off in the US amid the rapidly deepening crisis between Russia and Ukraine. At 9:50 a.m., the BSE Sensex stood at 55,207.7, down 2,024.32 points or 3.54 percent. The NSE Nifty was trading at 16,490.45, down 573 points or 3.36 percent. Asian colleagues fell to 3.3 percent.
The stock markets also bled all sector indices with maximum losses in Nifty Realty, down 4 percent. Handy PSBs, IT, Auto Metal were down 3.5 percent. All other indices fell 2 percent.
In the broader markets, the BSE MidCap and SmallCap indices were also in negative territory, reaching 2.8 percent, respectively. The overall breadth of the market was also extremely negative with 2,578 declines against 270 advancing stocks on the BSE.
VK Vijayakumar, chief investment strategist, Geojit Financial Services, said: “Growing concerns over the worsening crisis in Ukraine have pushed global stock markets into correction mode. The nearly 20 percent drop from the peak in NASDAQ is a clear indication of the correction that has set in. Also, the safe-haven flight to $1913 is a reflection of the risks emanating from the crisis. Investors should wait and watch the situation before making big commitments.”
Moscow Stock Exchange suspends trading
The Moscow stock exchange suspended trading on Thursday amid tensions between Ukraine and Russia. In a brief release on its website, the exchange said, “Moscow Exchange has suspended trading in all of its markets until further notice.” This comes against the background of Russian President Valdmir Putin announcing military operations in eastern Ukraine.
Wall Street’s key indices ended sharply lower on Wednesday, extending their recent defeat when Ukraine declared a state of emergency and the US State Department said a Russian invasion of Ukraine may be imminent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 464.85 points or 1.38 percent to 33,131.76, the S&P 500 lost 79.26 points or 1.84 percent to 4,225.5 and the Nasdaq Composite fell 344.03 points or 2.57 percent to 13,037.49.
Tokyo stocks opened lower on Thursday, extending the declines on Wall Street further, with investors dodging risk as tensions between Russia and Ukraine mount. The benchmark Nikkei 225 index fell 0.61 percent or 160.42 points to 26,289.19 at opening, while the broader Topix index fell 0.53 percent or 9.91 points to 1,871.17.
Hong Kong collapsed in the first few minutes of trade on Thursday morning after separatists asked Moscow for help to fend off Ukrainian troops, raising fears of a Russian invasion. The Hang Seng index fell 1.66 percent or 392.25 points to 23,268.03. The Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.42 percent or 14.78 points to 3,474.37, while the Shenzhen Composite Index lost 0.63 percent or 14.64 points to 2,322.94.
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