Upcoming US rate hike subdues markets; Sensex down 126 points

Mumbai, Dec 7 Heightened chances of a US rate hike, coupled with slow progress in passing of a key economic legislation, subdued Indian equity markets, leading a barometer index to shed 126 points or 0.49 percent during the mid-afternoon trade session on Monday.

Initially, both the bellwether indices of the Indian equity markets opened higher in-sync with their Asian peers which firmed-up following Friday’s positive close for the US markets.

However, the initial gains were capped following a healthy growth in a key US data – the non-farm payroll figures which were release on Friday.

The data showed that the US economy created 211,000 jobs last month against expectations of 200,000.

The data assumes significances as it heightened the chances of a US rate hike slated for mid-December.

A US rate hike could potentially lead to a massive pullback of foreign funds from emerging economies like India.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) shed 126 points or 0.49 percent during the mid-afternoon session.

Similarly, the wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) was trading in the red. It was lower by 23.10 points or 0.30 percent at 7,758.80 points.

The Sensex of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 25,746.03 points, was trading at 25,512.22 points (at 1.30 p.m.), down 125.89 points or 0.49 percent from the previous day’s close at 25,638.11 points.

The Sensex so far touched a high of 25,785.53 points and a low of 25,511.81 points in the intra-day trade so far.

Sector-wise, healthy buying was observed in healthcare, banking and consumer durables sector, while selling pressure was seen in fast moving consumer goods (FMCG), automobile and metal sectors.

The healthcare index augmented by 128.58 points, banking index gained by 28.76 points and consumer durables index was higher by 24.72 points, while the FMCG index dwindled by 181.41 points, automobile index receded by 70.15 points and metal index declined by 56.17 points.