Indian equity benchmarks on Monday settled lower in a volatile trading session, dragged by heavy losses in metal stocks. The domestic indices fluctuated between gains and losses throughout today’s session before closing in the red.
The government has imposed hefty export duties on crucial steel-making raw materials like iron ore and pellets. The tax on the export of iron ores and concentrates has been hiked to 50 per cent from 30 per cent. On iron pellets, a 45 per cent duty has been imposed.
The 30-share BSE Sensex fell 38 points or 0.07 per cent to close at 54,289, while the broader NSE Nifty moved 51 points or 0.32 per cent down to settle at 16,215.
Mid- and small-cap shares finished on a weak note as Nifty Midcap 100 shed 0.35 per cent and small-cap slipped 0.80 per cent.
13 out of the 15 sector gauges — compiled by the National Stock Exchange — settled in the red. Sub-index Nifty Metal underperformed the platform by falling as much as 8.14 per cent. The plunge in metal stocks erased gains in automobile and information technology.
On the stock-specific front, JSW Steel was the top Nifty loser as the stock cracked 13.21 per cent to Rs 547.75. Tata Steel, Divi’s Lab, ONGC and Hindalco were also among the laggards.
The overall market breadth stood negative as 1,452 shares advanced while 1,937 declined on BSE.
On the 30-share BSE index, Tata Steel, UltraTech Cement, ITC. PowerGrid, HDFC twins (HDFC and HDFC Bank), HCL Tech, Reliance Industries, SBI and Bharti Airtel were among the top losers.
Also, shares of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) fell 1.14 per cent to close at Rs 816.85 today. LIC made a tepid debut at the exchanges last week, listing at a discount of 8.62 per cent over its issue price of Rs 949.
In contrast, M&M, Maruti, Hindustan Unilever, Asian Paints, L&T, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Wipro, Tech Mahindra, Infosys, TCS, Nestle India, Sun Pharma, IndusInd Bank, Titan, Dr Reddy’s and NTPC settled in the green.
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