The Indian equity benchmarks fell sharply, closing lower for the fifth session in a row on Thursday, tracking rising 10-year US bond yields. The rising yields triggered fears regarding outflow of foreign money from equities to US bonds, analysts said. Rising Covid-19 cases in the country also soured investor sentiment towards risk assets. The benchmarks had staged a gap-up opening but reversed gains after the 10-year US bond yields moved above 1.7 per cent, their highest level since January. The Sensex dropped as much as 1,334 points from the day's highest level and Nifty 50 index touched an intra-day low of 14,478.60 after hitting an intraday high of 14,875.20.
The Sensex ended 585 points or 1.17 per cent lower at 49,216.52 and Nifty 50 index tumbled 163 points or 1.11 per cent to close at 14,557.85
"U.S. 10-year yields are now up to 1.72 per cent, their highest since January last year and it is tough to ignore sentiment from the bond market, which is spilling over to equity markets," Amit Kumar Gupta, portfolio manager at Adroit Financial Services told news agency Reuters.
Infosys, Reliance Industries, Tata Consultancy Services, ICICI Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, HCL Technologies and Axis Bank were among the top drags on the Sensex.
"Today, the market failed to show resilience to stay above the level of 14,750. As of now, the short-term technical condition of the market shows that the Nifty range is likely to be between 14,410 and 14,900," Ashis Biswas, head of technical research at CapitalVia Global told NDTV.
All the 19 sector gauges compiled by the BSE ended lower, led by the S&P BSE Information Technology index's over 3 per cent fall. Banking, auto, oil & gas, realty, healthcare, energy, capital goods and realty indices dropped 1-2 per cent.
Mid- and small-cap shares also faced selling pressure as S&P BSE MidCap index tanked 1.3 per cent and SmallCap index tumbled 1.6 per cent.
On the primary market front, Nazara Technologies IPO was going strong with subscription of over 7 times on the second day of the issue. On the other hand, Suryoday Small Finance Bank witnessed tepid demand for the issue as it was subscribed 73 per cent.
HCL Technologies was top Nifty loser, the stock fell 3.5 per cent to close at Rs 953. Infosys, Divi's Labs, Dr Reddy's Labs, Hero MotoCorp, TCS, Reliance Industries. Wipro, Tech Mahindra, ICICI Bank, Sun Pharma, Cipla, Coal India and GAIL India also dropped 1.7-3 per cent.
On the flip side, ITC, Bajaj Auto, Hindalco, Grasim Industries, Bharti Airtel, Mahindra & Mahindra and Tata Motors were among the notable gainers.
The overall market breadth was extremely negative as 2,157 shares ended lower while 825 closed higher on the BSE.