Mumbai, May 4 (IANS) A benchmark index for Indian equities markets Friday slid 320 points to close below 17,000 for the first time in more than three months over growing concerns over the depreciating rupee and the General Anti-Avoidance Rule in the Finance Bill.
Weak cues from European markets accelerated the fall, leading to a sell-off in banking, consumer goods, metals and auto stocks.
The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened in the red at 17,066.84 points, ended the day at 16,831.08, down by 1.87 percent or 320.11 points from its previous close at 17,151.19.
The Sensex touched a high of 17,121.37 points and low of 16,776.72 points in intra-day trade. The midcap index was down 133.95 points and smallcap index fell by 121.70 points.
Trading sentiments was low with jittery investors booking profits as the rupee slid against the dollar for the fourth straight day. There were concerns over the likely wording of the General Anti-Avoidance Rule in the Finance Bill which will be up for parliament's approval next week.
The wide-based 50-scrip S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange was also down by 1.96 percent or 101.55 points at 5,086.85 points.
There was heavy selling pressure in banking, consumer goods, metals and auto stocks.
The BSE banking index was down by 369.67 points followed by consumer goods index by 346.10 points. The metals index was down by 271.68 points and auto index by 184.63 points.
Banking stocks slumped after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced guidelines for implementation of the Basel III norms.
The country's largest lender State Bank of India was down by 4.39 percent at Rs.1,993.60. Private lender HDFC Bank's scrip fell by 2.86 percent at Rs.536.75 and ICICI Bank's stock fell by 2.75 percent at Rs.833.95.
Hero MotoCorp's scrip plunged 4.42 percent at Rs.1,980.85 on negative buyer sentiments. The other major auto company Bajaj Auto was also down 3.76 percent at Rs.1,501.75, Mahindra and Mahindra, down 2.47 percent at Rs.687.85 and Maruti Suzuki, down 0.64 percent at Rs.1,283.15.
Other major Sensex losers included BHEL, down 4.93 percent at Rs.214.10, L&T, down 4.30 percent at Rs.1,147.95, Tata Steel, down 3.29 percent at Rs.433.55, Sterlite Inds, down 3.21 percent at Rs.101.10 and DLF, down 2.99 percent at Rs.181.85.
Only five of the 30 Sensex scrips ended in the positive terrain. These were Cipla, up 2.46 percent at Rs.325.20; Wipro, up 0.63 percent at Rs.414.90, Hindustan Uniliver, up 0.30 percent at Rs.434.90, Sun Pharma, up 0.15 percent at Rs.600.75 and Tata Motors, up 0.02 percent at Rs.301.40.