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Market trades sideways with deep losses; breadth remains weak

Published on Feb 24, 2022 11:33

Equity indices traded sideways with sharp losses as investors watched the escalating situation between Russia and Ukraine. All sectoral indices on the NSE traded in the red with auto banks and IT stocks losing the most.

At 11:31 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, declined 1,482.97 points or 2.59% to 55,749.09. The Nifty 50 index fell 436.8 points or 2.56% to 16,626.45.

In the broader market, the S&P BSE Mid-Cap index fell 3.19% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index slumped 3.22%.

Sellers outpaced buyers. On the BSE, 309 shares rose and 2902 shares fell. A total of 104 shares were unchanged.

Trading sentiment took a hit after Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a public address that he had authorized a military operation in Ukraine. Later the media reported explosions were heard in Kyiv. Putin appealed to Ukrainian soldiers to lay down their arms and go home. He said Russia doesn`t plan to �occupy� its southern neighbour, but that Russia must �defend itself from those who took Ukraine hostage� -- the U.S. and its allies who had crossed Russia`s �red line� with expansion of the NATO alliance.

India has called for an immediate de-escalation of tensions between Russia and Ukraine. India`s Permanent Representative UN, TS Tirumurti cautioned that the situation is in danger of spiraling into a major crisis. He was addressing an emergency meeting of UN Security Council held on Ukraine this morning. This was the second meeting of UNSC this week and the fourth since January 31 as tensions escalated between Russia and Ukraine. Tirumurti emphasized sustained and focused diplomacy to address all issues concerning the situation.

Meanwhile, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres made a direct appeal to President Putin to stop Russian troops from attacking Ukraine.

Buzzing Index:

The Nifty Metal index declined 1.4% to 5,530.45, resuming its downtrend after a day`s pause.

Steel Authority of India (down 4.06%), Jindal Steel & Power (down 3.15%), Coal India (down 2.3%), Hindustan Zinc (down 2.23%) and JSW Steel (down 2.16%) were the top losers. Among the other losers were APL Apollo Tubes (down 2.16%), Tata Steel (down 1.8%), NMDC (down 1.58%) and Vedanta (down 1.05%).

Stocks in Spotlight:

Sanofi India rose 0.38%. The company reported 23% fall in net profit to Rs 90.40 crore on a 4.5% fall in net sales to Rs 687.90 crore in Q4 CY21 over Q4 CY20. Total expenditure rose 1.3% YoY to Rs 56.70 crore in the fourth quarter, primarily due to higher raw material costs (up 85.3% YoY) and higher other expenses (up 10.8% YoY). Profit before tax in Q4 CY21 stood at Rs 132.20 crore, down 22.3% YoY.

Bharti Airtel down 3.48%. The telecom operator said that it has acquired a strategic stake in Aqilliz, a blockchain as a service company. Singapore-based Aqilliz has developed a patented hybrid blockchain platform, Atom that integrates differential privacy and federated learning on a distributed digital ledger. This allows brands to create secure and consent-based solutions to engage with customers in a rapidly evolving digital economy that`s becoming increasingly decentralised.

Global Markets:

Asian stocks tumbled on Thursday as investors continue to watch the escalating situation between Russia and Ukraine.

The Bank of Korea kept interest rates unchanged at 1.25% at its meeting on Thursday. However, it predicted that consumer price inflation will run �substantially above 3% for a considerable time.�

US stocks fell sharply once again Wednesday, as escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine push the major averages to fresh lows for the year so far.

Investors have been juggling brewing tensions between Russia and Ukraine. Ukraine warned its citizens against traveling to Russia and to leave the neighboring country, if they are there. Meanwhile, the UK said that it was ready to impose more sanctions on Russia.

Meanwhile, the Biden administration announced it will allow sanctions to move forward on the company in charge of building Russia`s Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, following a first tranche of sanctions against Russia Tuesday that targets Russian banks, the country`s sovereign debt and three individuals.

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