Global growth worries again came to the fore today, knocking off 207.27 points from the benchmark BSE Sensex while the NSE Nifty sank below 7,800-level as weak Chinese factory data and forecast of further slowdown in euro zone triggered late sell-off in domestic equities.
In a second straight fall, Sensex traded in a wide range of over 500 points before settling at its three-week low of 25,229.70.
Shares of private sector lender HDFC ended 0.62 per cent higher at Rs 1,099.50 after the company reported a nearly 31 per cent jump in consolidated profit for the March quarter.
Automaker Tata Motors rose 0.54 per cent to Rs 409.50 on 9.9 per cent sales growth in April.
Retail participation remained guarded as the mid-cap index declined 0.85 per cent and the small-cap fell 0.28 per cent.
Brokers said sentiment took a turn for worse after European stocks extended their lowest level in three weeks as investors weighed a slew of earnings by lenders and a weak Chinese manufacturing data. Meanwhile, the European Commission slashed forecasts for euro zone growth, on the back of a slowdown in emerging markets.
After opening up by over 268 points on sustained foreign fund inflows, the 30-share index cracked under all-round selling and ended at 25,229.70, down 207.27 points or 0.81 per cent. This is the index’s lowest closing since April 12.
The NSE Nifty hit a low of 7,735.15 before settling lower by 58.90 points or 0.75 per cent at 7,747.
Scrip of Coal India suffered the most among the 30-Sensex constituents by tumbling 3.07 per cent to Rs 279.85.
Sector-wise, BSE IT index dropped the most, down 1.57 per cent followed by metal 1.34 per cent, PSU 1.22 per cent, oil&gas 1.04 per cent, FMCG 1.03 per cent, banking 1.03 per cent and teck 0.97 per cent.
In regional markets, China saw a mixed trend after the latest data showed deceleration in China’s manufacturing activity in April. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite ended 1.85 per cent higher and South Korean Kospi firmed up by 0.42 per cent while indices in Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan fell by 0.96 per cent to 1.85 per cent. Markets in Japan remained shut today for a public holiday.
Europe was trading lower on cut in growth projections. Key indices in France, Germany and the UK fell between 0.81 per cent and 1.84 per cent.