Mumbai, Mar 7 : The Sensex shed 3.5 per cent or 578 points in early morning trading on Friday and when reports last came in, it was pegged at 15,964 due to extremely weak global cues.
Asian markets were also sharply down following a fresh slide in American stocks yesterday as a number of the US mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures continued to rise in the fourth quarter
In the broader markets, the Nifty is in red by 166 points or 3.4 per cent. It is trading at 4,755 levels. Selling is evident in real estate, banking and information technology counters.
"It is looking very gloomy now and if Nifty closes around 4,800 levels then we will be in a bearish grip. If Sensex slips to 16,100 levels then the market will remain bound at around 14,500 levels for the next few months," said Sudhanshu Pandey, Technical Analyst, LKP Shares.
"We have been suggesting selling on bounces rather than buying on dips. In this kind of scenario, it makes more sense to reshuffle portfolio than to latch on to your holding," added Sandeep Shenoy, Head Equities, PINC Research.
The other Asian markets are also trading weak with Hong Kong's Hang Seng, Japan's Nikkei and South Korea's Kospi slippings into red territory by over 2.4 per cent each.
Reliance Energy is the biggest loser in the BSE-30 pack at Rs 1,381 shedding 5.4 per cent or Rs 78. Satyam Computers, ICICI Bank, DLF, Infosys and Reliance Communications are some of the other top losers.
Among the NSE-50 scrips, Siemens India, Suzlon Energy, Tata Power Company, Zee Entertainment and Dr Reddy's Laboratory are the top losers shedding over 4 per cent each.
The BSE real estate index shedding 3.9 per cent or 327 points is the biggest loser among the sectoral indices. Indiabulls Real Estate, Kolte-Patil Developers, Akruti City, HDI and Ansal API are the major losers in this pack. (ANI with inputs)