New Delhi: The benchmark BSE Sensex on Tuesday lost about 155 points to close at an over two-week low of 38,157.92, falling for the fifth session in a row following sustained foreign fund outflows, surging global crude oil prices and tumbling rupee against dollar.
The Indian rupee on Tuesday crashed to a fresh record low of 71.54 against the US dollar intra-day, weighing on investors sentiment. A widespread selling emerged in consumer durables, PSUs, infrastructure, realty, FMCG, telecom, utilities, power, metal, auto, healthcare, banking, oil and gas, capital goods and finance.
Among the losers were Asian Paints, SBI, Adani Ports, HUL, Coal India, IndusInd Bank, Vedanta, Tata Motors, Hero Motocorp, Bharti Airtel, Yes Bank, ONGC, ICICI Bank, Tata Steel, Bajaj Auto, M&M, ITC, Kotak Bank, HDFC Bank, NTPC, Maruti Suzuki, PowerGrid, L&T and Sun Pharma, shedding up to 3.49 per cent.
However, IT firms Infosys, TCS and Wipro were among the top gainers in the Sensex pack, buoyed by the fall in the Indian rupee's value. Tata Consultancy Services also on Tuesday became the second Indian company to attain a market valuation of over Rs 8 lakh crore mark following surge in its share price. During the afternoon trade, the IT major's market capitalisation (m-cap) stood at Rs 8,01,550.50 crore on the BSE.
The 30-share Sensex had soared 206.04 points to hit a high of 38,518.56 in early trade but gave up its gains following a widespread sell-off, which dragged it down to 38,098.60, with the benchmark equity gauge set for its longest string of losses in more than three months.
The gauge finally ended at an over two-week low of 38,157.92, down 154.60 points or 0.40 per cent.
This is its weakest closing since August 17 when it had finished at 37,947.88. It had lost 584.11 points in the previous four sessions.
The broader NSE Nifty closed lower by 62.05 points, or 0.54 per cent, at 11,520.30, after hovering between 11,496.85 and 11,602.55.
Sentiment remained weak on sustained capital outflows by foreign funds after an investor lobby group named AMRI (Asset Management Roundtable of India) said on Monday that the immediate impact of the new Sebi KYC norms, if not amended, would flush out USD 75-billion FPI investment from the country within a short time-frame. The organisation also warned that it would have severe impact on stocks and rupee.
However, taking strong objection to these claims, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) on Tuesday said, "It is preposterous and highly irresponsible to claim that USD 75 billion FPI investment will move out of the country because of Sebi's circular issued in April 2018."
Brokers said rising global crude oil prices, which went past the USD 78 per barrel mark and plunge in the rupee's value and sustained foreign fund outflows weighed on market sentiment.
Asian stocks ended mixed and Europe opened lower amid continuing concerns about stability in emerging markets and prospects of escalating international trade disputes. Besides, emergency austerity measures in Argentina highlighted turbulence in emerging markets.
Investors also noticed Nikkei India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) that was released on Monday and showed growth in India's manufacturing sector moderated in August as domestic demand softened.
The Nikkei India Manufacturing PMI stood at 51.7 in August against 52.3 in July. Meanwhile, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) net sold shares worth a net of Rs 21.13 crore and domestic institutional investors (DIIs) also sold equities to the tune of Rs 542.12 crore on Monday, as per provisional data.