The S&P BSE Sensex and NSE Nifty 50 Indexes witnessed steep declines amid a broad-based selloff in late morning trades mirroring equities in other Asian markets as the US Federal Reserve poured cold water on market expectations of a lengthy easing cycle following a 25 basis-point rate cut. Metal, capital goods, banking, pharma and financial sector shares were among the worst hit in trade today. Meanwhile, HDFC, HDFC Bank, Infosys, Reliance Industries, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Larsen & Toubro were among the biggest drags on the Sensex.
As of 12:36 pm, the Sensex fell 424 points to 37,057 and the Nifty 50 Index dropped below important psychological level of 11,000, down 1.14 per cent or 34 points at 10,992.
In the Nifty 50 basket of shares, 41 shares were trading lower while only nine were among the gainers.
Zee Entertainment was top loser in the Nifty 50 basket of shares, the stock dropped 5.37 per cent to Rs 342.20 after Essel Group on Wednesday said it will sell 11 per cent stake in its Zee Entertainment Enterprises for Rs 4,224 crore to Invesco Oppenheimer Developing Markets Fund.
The deal to sell 11 per cent to the fund comes as the founders of Essel Group reduce their stake in Zee in a bid to pay off a debt of about Rs 11,000 crore by September this year.
Vedanta, JSW Steel, Hindalco, UPL, Tata Motors, Yes Bank, Indibulls Housing FInance, Tata Steel and HDFC were also among the laggards, down between 2.3 and 4.2 per cent each.
On the flipside, Bharti Infratel, Wipro, Power Grid, GAIL, NTPC and Bajaj Finance were among the notable gainers.
All the 11 sector gauges compiled by National Stock Exchange were trading lower led by the Nifty Media Index's 3.3 per cent decline. Nifty Metal, Pharma, PSU Bank and Private Bank gauges also dropped between 1-2.6 per cent each.
The selling pressure was broad-based as Nifty Midcap 100, Nifty Smallcap 100 and Nifty 500 Indexes declined between 0.7 and 1 per cent each.
The overall market breadth was extremely negative as 1,121 shares were trading lower while 521 were among the gainers on the NSE.
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