After opening weak, the Indian equity markets continued to extend losses in the post noon trade with no signs of recovery, and closed the day on a poor note. Weak global cues on account of concerns over European growth dragged the domestic markets lower. While BSE Sensex ended lower by 340 points, the NSE-Nifty closed down by 101 points. While most of the sectoral indices ended in red, the mid and small cap indices too lost steam. The BSE Mid Cap and the BSE Small Cap indices were down by 1.4% and 1.1% respectively. Metals and auto stocks witnessed maximum selling pressures.
Asian indices closed the day in red today, while European indices opened weak. The rupee was trading at Rs 61.25 to the dollar at the time of writing.
Barring few such as Reliance Industries, Castrol India and Gujarat Gas, all the remaining energy sector stocks have been weak today. Stocks of Cairn India and Petronet LNG have led the pack of losers. In one set of news, Cairn India has reported a 7% decline in production from its flagship Rajasthan oilfields, primarily due to a shutdown at the fields to carry out maintenance work. ITs Rajasthan block production in July-September stood at 163,262 barrels of oil per day as compared to 175,478 bpd a year ago. However, the company has mentioned that production is back to normal levels in the current quarter.
Cairn produced 204,128 barrels of oil and oil equivalent gas from all its fields in the country in Q2, down 8% from 221,190 bpd in the same period a year ago. Cairn holds 70 per cent interest in Rajasthan block while the remaining 30 per cent is with state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC). Besides, the output from Ravva oil and gas field off the Andhra coast slipped 29% to 20,596 bpd as gas sales have been suspended since July 4, 2014 on account of one of the customers undertaking a major unplanned maintenance activity within their Andhra Pradesh pipeline network.
All the PSU bank stocks have closed the day on a negative note with Bank of Maharashtra and Oriental Bank leading the pack of losers. The country's second largest public sector bank Punjab National Bank has revised its deposit rates across select maturities for amounts more than one crore and less than ten crore. The management had earlier stated that the bank was considering lowering deposit rates earlier in mid September when State Bank of India (SBI) had first cut its deposit rates. SBI had pared its deposit rates by 25 bps for retail customers for the maturity between one and three years to 8.75%. SBI could do so because it carries lot of liquidity in its balance sheet and the bank has been experiencing poor credit demand.
Sluggish credit growth at decade lows of 9.5% has been prompting banks to trim rates so that they manage their assets and liabilities in a better way.