Sensex nosedives by 705 points, below 13,000

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Mumbai, Sep 18: The Bombay Stock Exchange benchmark Sensex on Thursday, Sep 18 tumbled by 705 points at 12,558.14 from its previous close of 13,262.90 points on sustained heavy panic-selling pressure by local operators on global rout in equities. Similarly, the S &P CNX Nifty index of National Stock Exchange (NSE) nosedived by 162 points at 3,846.25 points from its last finish of 4,008.25.

Key benchmark indices tumbled on fears that the global credit crisis could worsen further, rattling investors confidence across the globe. Brokers said ''Tracking decline on Wall Street, the Asian markets tumbled today, as investors feared more companies could succumb to the global financial crisis that forced the US to bail out troubled insurance major American International Group Inc (AIG).'' Key benchmark indices in China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, Taiwan and South Korea were down between 3.50 per cent and 7.38 per cent, which affected to downward trend at the Indian bources, brokers pointed out.

Reports that the number two US investment bank Morgan Stanley was likely to be the next victim of the credit crisis and spurt in crude oil prices dampened the sentiment.

The market breadth was extremely weak. The BSE 30-share Sensex was down by 630.58 points. All the 30 members from the Sensex pack were in the red. Reliance Industries hit 52-week low below Rs 1,800.

Bharti Airtel plunged a little under eight per cent.

Later, the BSE 30-share Sensex hit the low of 12,558.14. The Nifty resumed low at 4,005.25 points with a small loss of three points from it last close. It recorded the low at 3,799.55 points.

Wall Street tumbled to a three-year low yesterday, as the Federal Reserve's rescue of insurer AIG failed to calm a crisis of confidence in global markets. The Dow Jones industrial average plunged 449.36 points, or 4.06 pc, to 10,609.66. The S &P 500 index slipped 57.21 points, or 4.71 pc, to 1,156.39, while the Nasdaq Composite index declined 109.05 points, or 4.94 pc, to 2,098.85, also contributed to weak tendency sentiment in the markets.

Bharti Airtel plunged 7.79 pc to Rs 710.05 and was the top loser from Sensex pack. Banking shares were weak ahead of the weekly inflation data due after market hours today. ICICI Bank declined 5.67 pc to Rs 528.90. The bank yesterday denied rumours of top management selling shares over the last few days. Other banking shares like HDFC Bank (down by 5.33 pc to Rs 1,121.40) and State Bank of India (down by 3.31 pc to Rs 1,478.05) were in the red.

Among others, Reliance Industries fell by 4.20 pc to Rs 1,794.90 on 2.45 lakh shares and Ranbaxy Laboratories also slumped by 6.34 pc to Rs 355.05 on reports that the US Government has banned more than 30 generic drugs made by the company citing poor quality in two of its Indian factories.

Jaiprakash Associates (down by 7.16 pc to Rs 126.20), DLF (down by 7.22 pc to Rs 379.20) and Reliance Communications (down by 7.49 pc to Rs 331.50) -- edged lower.

UNI

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