New Delhi: The Indian equity indices on Monday traded lower in opening deals amid the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict. Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered its defence chiefs to put nuclear “deterrence forces” on high alert as Western nations escalated sanctions against it. Asian markets plunged as Japan’s Nikkei fell 0.34 per cent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was 1.49 per cent down and the Shanghai Composite index dropped 0.28 per cent.
As of 9:31 am, the benchmark BSE Sensex fell 1,004 points or 1.80 per cent to 54,854; while the broader NSE Nifty moved 268 points or 1.61 per cent lower to 16,390.
Mid-and small-cap shares were trading on a negative note as Nifty Midcap 100 index moved 1.36 per cent down and small-cap shares shed 2.01 per cent.
Most of the sector gauges — compiled by the National Stock Exchange — were trading in the red. Nifty Auto and Nifty Bank were underperforming the index by slipping as much as 1.99 per cent and 1.92 per cent, respectively.
On the stock-specific front, Tata Motors was the top Nifty loser as the stock cracked 2.99 per cent to Rs 446. HDFC Bank, Asian Paints, SBI Life and Hero MotoCorp were also among the laggards.
On BSE, the overall market breadth was weak as 650 shares were advancing while 2,086 were declining.
Investors’ wealth slumped by more than Rs 4.09 lakh crore to Rs 245.93 lakh crore in early trade.
On the 30-share BSE index, Asian Paints, Maruti, HDFC Bank, Dr Reddy’s, M&M and Bajaj Finserv were among the top losers. PowerGrid and Tata Steel were trading in the green.
Sensex had jumped 1,329 points or 2.44 per cent to close at 55,859 on Friday; while the broader NSE Nifty had moved 410 points or 2.53 per cent higher to settle at 16,658.