Investors nervous after new coronavirus cases
Equity benchmarks retreated on Thursday as disappointing macroeconomic data and a sharp rise in the number of new coronavirus cases in China dampened investor sentiment.
The BSE Sensex skidded 106.11 points, or 0.26 per cent, to settle at 41459.79.
Likewise, the NSE benchmark Nifty dropped 26.55 points, or 0.22 per cent, to close at 12174.65.
Global markets wobbled after new cases from China’s coronavirus outbreak soared under a new diagnostic method, with over 200 more deaths and thousands of new patients.
On the macro front, official data released after market hours on Wednesday showed that India’s industrial output contracted 0.3 per cent in December, while retail inflation jumped to a 68-month high of 7.59 per cent in January on high food prices.
Interest-rate sensitive bank, finance and auto stocks tumbled as the high inflation dimmed the prospects of a rate cut by the RBI.
IndusInd Bank was the top loser in the Sensex pack, falling 3.68 per cent, followed by NTPC, Tata Steel, ICICI Bank, Kotak Bank and HDFC.
“The spike in new coronavirus cases reported across the globe and rise in inflation level for January held markets flat as investors awaited for more cues,” said Vinod Nair, head of research, Geojit Financial Services.