Sensex falls 72 pts in early trade on weak Asian cues

Mumbai: The benchmark BSE Sensex dropped about 72 points in early trade today, on fresh spell of selling by investors, taking weak cues from other Asian markets on escalating geopolitical tensions after North Korea’s latest nuclear test yesterday.

The 30-share index slipped by 71.65 points or 0.22 per cent to 31,820.58. The gauge had gained 503.84 points in the previous three sessions.

The NSE Nifty fell by 21.85 points, or 0.21 per cent, to 9,952.55.

Brokers said apart from profit booking in recent gainers by investors, a weak trend in Asian markets on mounting geopolitical tensions after North Korea said it had successfully tested a hydrogen bomb, pulled down the indices.

Major losers among Sensex components were Adani Ports, Dr Reddy’s, Kotak Bank, Asian Paint, Sun Pharma, Infosys, HDFC Bank, Bharti Airtel, L&T, Hind Unilever, Hero MotoCorp, NTPC, HDFC Ltd, M&M and Tata Steel, losing by up to 1.88 per cent.

Among other Asian markets, Japan’s Nikkei was down 0.86 per cent while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.49 per cent in early trade. Shanghai Composite Index, however, was marginally up by 0.08 per cent.

The US Dow Jones ended 0.18 per cent higher in Friday’s trade.