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Sensex falls 150 points, Nifty slips 51 points amid fresh trade war fears; metal stocks lead losses, Yes Bank surges 27%

FP Staff

Falling for the third straight session, the BSE Sensex declined over 151 points in opening trade on Thursday following weak Asian markets amid fresh trade war fears. The United States said on Wednesday it would slap tariffs on Europe-made planes, liquor and cheese as punishment for illegal EU aircraft subsidies.

The move follows tariffs levied by the United States and China on hundreds of billions of dollars of each other's goods in their more than year-old trade war, which has disrupted supply chains and weighed on global markets.

The NSE gauge Nifty too fell about 51 points in opening deals.

Key Indian equity indices opened on a negative note on Thursday, a PTI report said.

The domestic indices traded in line with the Asian markets, which fell on fresh trade concerns after the US announced tariffs on products from the European Union. The 30-share index tanked 151.70 points or 0.40 percent to trade at 38,153.71. While the broader Nifty was down 51.95 points or 0.46 percent at 11,307.95 in opening trade.

The Sensex fall was mainly driven by Vedanta, Axis Bank, Tata Steel, Bharti Airtel, Sun Pharma and L&T. On the other hand, Yes Bank, Tata Motors, Hero MotoCorp, ITC Bajaj Auto, SBI and ICICI Bank were among the scrips trading in the green.

Among stocks, Hindalco lost by 4.8 percent, Vedanta by 3.3 percent and Tata Steel by 2.8 percent, ANI said. Coal India, Larsen & Toubro, Axis Bank, HDFC Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank also traded with losses.

Yes Bank gained sharply by 27 percent at 40.70 per share after chief executive officer Ravneet Gill said the recent drop in stock price does not reflect the bank's performance and the operating matrix are absolutely sound. At 10.36 hours, the scrip was trading 24.06 percent at Rs 39.55 per share.

On Tuesday, the Sensex fell 361.92 points or 0.94 percent to close 38,305.41. The broader Nifty too closed lower by 114.55 points, or 1 percent, at 11,359.90. Stock markets were shut on Wednesday on account of Gandhi Jayanti. Investors remained cautious as weak American jobs data raised concerned about the global economy, while the WTO triggered fresh trade war fears after it allowed the US to impose tariffs on the European Union, experts said. Asian markets on Thursday were trading in the red. Nikkei fell two percent, while Hang Seng was trading lower by 0.7 percent. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.63 percent by 0427 GMT. Markets in China are closed for a public holiday, Reuters said. Meanwhile, the rupee was trading about 20 paise lower at 71.27 against the American currency in morning deals.

Brent futures, the global oil benchmark, rose 0.03 percent to USD 57.71 per barrel.

Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) offloaded shares worth a net Rs 1,298.56 crore on Tuesday, according to provisional exchange data.

--With agency inputs

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