New Delhi: Indian stock indices began a massive gap-down opening Monday amid the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine. Crude oil prices rose and global equities fell as the risk of a US and European ban on Russian oil and delays in Iranian talks created a major stagflationary shock to global markets. All kinds of commodities were on the rise as the Russian-Ukraine conflict showed no signs of cooling. Gold hit the key level of $2,000 an ounce as investors rushed into safe-haven assets. The price of oil rose above $130, reaching its highest point since 2008.
At home, at 9:25 a.m., the benchmark BSE Sensex crashed 1,428 points or 2.63 percent to 52,906; while the wider NSE Nifty plunged 398 points or 2.45 percent to 15,847.
Mid and small cap stocks traded in the negative zone as the Nifty Midcap 100 index fell 2.62 percent and small cap stocks lost 2.41 percent.
Most sector gauges – compiled by the National Stock Exchange – were in the red. Nifty Auto and Nifty Bank underperformed the index by falling 4.38 percent and 3.69 percent in early trading, respectively. Nifty Metal, however, was up a whopping 0.47 percent.
On the stock-specific front, Maruti Suzuki India was the biggest loser as the stock cracked 5.59 percent to Rs 6,842.35. Bajaj Finance, ICICI Bank, Eicher Motors and M&M were also among those lagging behind.
As for BSE, overall market size was weak as 572 shares rose and 2,043 shares fell.
On the 30-share BSE index, Maruti, Bajaj Finance, ICICI Bank, L&T, UltraTech Cement, M&M were among the biggest losers. Tata Steel, on the other hand, traded in the green.
Sensex had dived 769 points or 1.40 percent and closed at 54,334 points on Friday; while Nifty had moved down 253 points or 1.53 percent to settle at 16,245.