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Sensex crashes 1,688 points as new Covid variant triggers global rout

Mumbai, November 26

The Sensex nosedived 1,688 points while the Nifty slumped below the 17,100-level on Friday as a new and potentially vaccine-resistant coronavirus variant sent shockwaves through global markets.

The variant, detected in South Africa, Botswana and Hong Kong so far, has an unusual combination of mutations, as per initial reports.

Countries like Britain and Japan have already imposed travel restrictions, raising the spectre of a fresh wave of lockdowns. The Sensex plummeted 1,687.94 points or 2.87% to close at 57,107.15 following an across-the-board selloff. Similarly, the Nifty plunged 509.80 points or 2.91% to 17,026.45.

Currency markets too were not spared, with the rupee sinking 37 paise versus the US dollar, in tandem with other emerging market currencies. IndusInd Bank was the top loser in the Sensex pack, tanking 6.01%, followed by Maruti, Tata Steel, NTPC, Bajaj Finance, HDFC and Titan.

Only four counters managed to close in the green — Dr Reddy’s, Nestle India, Asian Paints and TCS, spurting up to 3.32%.

Investors lost a whopping Rs 7.35 lakh crore in Friday’s session, with the market valuation of all BSE-listed companies standing at Rs 2,58,31,172.25 crore.

“Triggered by the new Covid variant in South Africa, domestic markets plummeted into negative territory following weak global peers. Existing inflation fears coupled with worries of an aggressive policy tightening by the US Fed Reserve also added to today’s catastrophic session.

“On the domestic front, broad-based sell off was witnessed as investors dumped Covid-sensitive stocks while focus was shifted towards the pharma sector amid growing concerns over the new variant with higher mutations,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services. — PTI

BLACK FRIDAY: Investors lose Rs7.35 lakh crore

IndusInd Bank was the top loser, tanking 6.01%, followed by Maruti, Tata Steel, NTPC, Bajaj Finance, HDFC and Titan
Only four counters managed to close in the green — Dr Reddy’s, Nestle India, Asian Paints and TCS, spurting up to 3.32%
Investors lost Rs7.35 lakh crore, with the market valuation of all BSE-listed firms standing at Rs2,5.8 lakh crore

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