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Sensex tumbles over 500 pts; ICICI, Sesa, Hindalco fall 4%


The News International Team

03:15 pm Gold price: Gold prices recovered by Rs 85 to Rs 26,625 per 10 grams at the bullion market today on the back of buying by jewellers and retailers at prevailing levels amid a firm global trend. Silver, however, remained under selling pressure and lost Rs 100 at Rs 36,200 per kg. Bullion traders said apart from fresh buying by jewellers and retailers at existing levels, a firming global trend where gold rose from a three-month low on speculation of increased demand in China, mainly influenced gold prices.

03:00pm Market Update: The Sensex tanked 541.18 points or 1.84 percent to 28907.77 and the Nifty plunged 166.85 points or 1.87 percent to 8770.90.

About 947 shares have advanced, 1844 shares declined, and 189 shares are unchanged on the BSE.

02:45pm Ranbaxy, Sun Pharma at new high: Ranbaxy Laboratories says the Hon’ble High Court of Punjab & Haryana has orally pronounced the order today, approving the scheme of arrangement involving merger of Ranbaxy Laboratories with Sun Pharmaceutical Industries under Sections 391 to 394, Sections 78 and 100 of the Companies Act. 1956 and Section 52 of the Companies Act, 2013.

Certified true copy of the order is awaited, it adds.

02:30pm MF AUM base: Buoyed by robust capital inflows and strong participation of retail investors, the asset base of mutual fund industry has crossed Rs 12 lakh crore mark in February.

The country’s 45 fund houses together have an average assets under management (AUM) of Rs 12,02,196 crore at February-end, up from Rs 11,81,356 crore in January, according to the data by Association of Mutual Funds in India (AMFI). In December, assets base of the industry stood at Rs 10.5 lakh crore.

Industry experts said the monthly rise in AUM is largely on account of strong capital inflows and a sharp rally in stock markets. Besides, retail participation in equity schemes increased significantly in the post-election rally begun in May. “There is optimism among investors and they are bullish on the economy and markets, which helped retail investors to increase participation,” an expert said.

Overall, the fund houses together witnessed an inflow of over Rs 18,000 crore last month. Of this inflow, liquid or money market category witnessed an inflow of Rs 8,784 crore, while equity segment saw an inflow of Rs 5,217 crore.

02:15pm Gold Update: Gold edged up today, but remained near a three-month low as the dollar hit an 11-year high after a strong US jobs report boosted expectations the Federal Reserve would soon hike interest rates.

Spot gold rose to USD 1,172.41 an ounce, retaining most Friday’s near 3 percent drop. It reached its weakest since December 1 of USD 1,163.45 in the previous session, when data showed US jobless rate fell to the lowest since May 2008.

US nonfarm payrolls increased 295,000 last month after rising 239,000 in January.

The dollar drifted to its highest in more than 11 years against a basket of major currencies early on Monday.

02:00pm Market Check

Indian equity benchmarks fell nearly 2 percent in afternoon trade on weakness in global markets. Investors feel the Federal Reserve could hike interest rates sooner rather than later after a strong US jobs report.

The 30-share BSE Sensex tanked 521.95 points or 1.77 percent to 28927 and the 50-share NSE Nifty declined 167.05 points or 1.87 percent to 8770.70. The BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices lost 1 percent and 0.7 percent, respectively.

More than two shares declined for every share advancing on the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Amisha Vora of Prabhudas Lilladher believes the market will have to spend some more time in the 8500-9000 range.

She says earnings need time to catch up and there has been no short-term booster dose that has come from the government through the Budget. Hence India continues to remain vulnerable to each global event – be it the strengthening of the dollar or the re-emergence of expectation of interest rate hike in the US earlier than expected, he says. According to her, all this is spooking investors.

ICICI Bank, Sesa Sterlite, Hindalco Industries, GAIL and Axis Bank topped the selling on Sensex, down 3.5-4 percent. Infosys, HDFC Bank, L&T, ITC, HDFC, TCS, Reliance Industries, NTPC and M&M shed 1-3 percent.

However, Hindustan Unilever bucked the trend, up 2.6 percent followed by Sun Pharma and Dr Reddy’s Labs with marginal gains.

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