Markets plunge on Covid-19 fears; Rs 5 trn investor wealth wiped off


PTI, Mar 9, 2020, 12:05 PM IST

New Delhi: Investor wealth plummeted by nearly Rs 5 trillion in early trade on Monday as equity markets crashed tracking global equity selloff amid rising uncertainty over the economic impact of coronavirus outbreak.

Market capitalisation (m-cap) of BSE-listed companies saw a massive decline after the 30-share index plunged 1515.01 points, or 4.03 per cent, to 36,061.61. The NSE Nifty too cracked 417.05 points, or 3.80 per cent, to 10,572.40.

The carnage in the equity market wiped out investor wealth worth Rs 4,79,820.87 crore, taking the total m-cap to Rs 1,39,39,640.96 crore on the BSE.

The m-cap of BSE-listed companies stood at Rs 1,44,31,224.41 crore at the end of trading on Friday.

Traders believe mounting fear of recession in major economies due to the coronavirus outbreak has sent equities into a downward spiral.

The overall confirmed cases on the mainland reached 80,735 by the end of Sunday which included 3,119 people who have died so far, 19,016 patients undergoing treatment and 58,600 patients discharged after recovery, China’s National Health Commission, (NHC) said.

All Sensex components were trading in the red, led by losses in ONGC, Reliance, IndusInd Bank, Tata Steel, L&T, ICICI Bank and Infosys.

Traders said investor sentiments also remained fragile amid incessant foreign fund outflows.

On a net basis, foreign institutional investors sold equities worth Rs 3,594.84 crore on Friday, data available with stock exchanges showed.

According to Moody’s Global Macro Outlook 2020-21, coronavirus will hurt economic growth in many countries through first half of 2020.

The global spread of the coronavirus is resulting in simultaneous supply and demand shocks, it said.

“We expect these shocks to materially slow economic activity, particularly in the first half of this year. We have therefore revised our 2020 baseline growth forecasts for all G-20 economies,” the report added.

On the BSE, 1,745 scrips declined, while 222 advanced and 101 remained unchanged.

Meanwhile, oil prices were in a free fall, plunging nearly 30 per cent to USD 32.11 per barrel after top exporter Saudi Arabia launched a price war in response to a failure by leading producers to strike a deal to support energy markets.

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