Market benchmark Sensex plunged 871 points to mark its worst single-session fall in nearly a month on Wednesday as investors moved to the sidelines amid rising coronavirus cases in the country. At the closing bell, the BSE Sensex was quoted at 49,180.31, a drop of 871.13 points or 1.74% its biggest one-day fall Since February 26. Similarly, the broader NSE Nifty dived 265.35 points or 1.79% to settle at 14,549.40.
In the Sensex pack, all shares closed in the red, barring Asian Paints and PowerGrid. M&M was the top loser, shedding around 4%, followed by SBI, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, IndusInd Bank, ITC and L&T. All sectoral indices ended lower, with BSE realty, metal, auto, bankex, industrials and finance indices falling up to 2.93%. Broader midcap and smallcap indices fell up to 1.69%.
"Indian market witnessed across-the-board selling amidst high volatility owing to weak global cues and spike in Covid cases. All sectors barring pharma witnessed selling as second and third wave infections in India and Europe, respectively, are bound to hamper economic recovery , Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services, said.
Binod Modi, Head Strategy at Reliance Securities, said, "Domestic equities fell sharply on weak global cues and continued apprehensions among investors from surge in coronavirus cases in the country. Further, a sharp rebound in dollar index aggravated concerns despite dip in US bond yields and crude prices, he added.
India recorded 47,262 fresh coronavirus cases in a day, the highest single-day rise so far this year, taking the nationwide COVID-19 tally to 1,17,34,058, the Union health ministry said on Wednesday. The daily rise in infections was the highest recorded in 132 days, while the country's COVID-19 death toll increased to 1,60,441, with 275 new fatalities, the highest in around 83 days.
Elsewhere in Asia, bourses in Shanghai, Hong Kong, Tokyo and Seoul plunged up to 2%. Stock exchanges in Europe were also trading on a negative note in mid-session deals.
On the domestic forex market front, the rupee fell by another 12 paise to end at 72.55 against the US dollar. Meanwhile, the global oil benchmark Brent crude was trading 2.78% higher at $62.48 per barrel.