Sensex Crashes 500 Points After Wall Street Bloodbath: Some Updates

Just when it seemed that some steadiness has returned to the stock markets, Sensex and Nifty suffered huge losses today amid a renewed global selloff. The BSE benchmark index Sensex fell over 550 points to touch an intraday low of 33,849 while the NSE Nifty dropped below 10,400. Asian markets tumbled on Friday, after the Wall Street suffered yet another big slide. US markets remained the epicentre of the global selloff, with the Dow plunging 4.1 per cent overnight. On Thursday, the Sensex had risen nearly 1 per cent, snapping seven sessions of fall.
  • The trigger for the global selloff has been strong US jobs data, which has spurred fears of rising inflation and ultimately more US central bank rate hikes.
  • With Thursday’s losses, both the Wall Street slid into a correction territory, falling more than 10 per cent from January 26 record highs. Since January 26, the S&P 500 has lost $2.49 trillion in market value, according to S&P Dow Jones Indices.
  • In Asian markets, Japan’s Nikkei was down over 3 per cent while Chinese markets tumbled over 5 per cent.
  • The strong US jobs data has sent US bond yields higher, hurting equities as they increase borrowing costs for companies and reduce their risk appetite.
  • Higher bond yields also present a fresh alternative to investors who may reallocate some funds to bonds from equities. US bond yields have also been pushed up by the prospect of increased debt issuance to fund fiscal spending under US President Donald Trump, inflation worries, and expectations of the Federal Reserve raising rates sooner and more frequently than was expected.
  • The Bank of England on Thursday said British interest rates probably need to rise sooner, adding to expectations of reduced central bank stimulus globally.
  • Analysts advise investors to stay light till global markets settle down. “Markets are undergoing much awaited (and required) correction. Thus, traders are continuously advised to remain light and avoid any kind of bottom fishing soon,” domestic brokerage Angel Broking said in a note.
  • Sanjiv Bhasin, executive VP for markets and corporate affairs at IIFL, said the volatility could settle down next week but further correction in Nifty below 10,000 cannot be ruled out. However, the recent correction in some midcaps, which have fallen sharply as compared to largecap stocks, presents a good buying opportunity and investors could accumulate on declines, he added.
  • In currency markets, the rupee slipped to 64.42 against the US dollar, as compared to Thursday’s close of 64.26.
  • The selling pressure was broad-based today with all the sectoral indices on the BSE in the red. Banking, pharma and IT stocks led the fall.
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