Indian markets on Monday fell 1.3%, its steepest fall of 2019, as a rise in global crude oil prices heightened concern about domestic inflationary pressure and fiscal slippages.
The Sensex fell 495.10 points, or 1.26%, to 38,645.18, while the 50-share index Nifty declined 1.35% to 11,594.45 points.
Oil prices rose to the highest in almost six months as the US government is expected to terminate sanctions waivers that allowed buyers to import Iranian crude. Brent crude prices hovered near a six-month high of $74.31 per barrel.
“Indian markets had a rough day today, on the back of sharp rise in crude oil price. As a significant importer of crude oil, the high oil price is not good for Indian macros. Further, after breath-taking rally of past two months, a correction was due in the Indian markets; and crude oil has triggered it," said Jagannadham Thunuguntla, senior VP and head of research (Wealth) at Centrum Broking Limited .
"Further, ongoing results season has provided mixed performance till date. For the markets to sustain at elevated levels, it’s very important for Indian corporate earnings to remain robust." Thunuguntla added.
Foreign investors have pumped more than $7.5 billion into India stocks so far this year. Votes in the general election that started April 11 will be counted on May 23. India’s earnings season is underway with five of the 49 Nifty companies that have reported earnings, so far either beating or matching estimates, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Yes Bank Ltd fell 6.6% while Tata Consultancy Services Ltd and Infosys Ltd rose, tracking weakness in the local currency.
Reliance Industries Ltd fell 2.8% to ₹1344.80. Weak refining margins and lower average revenue per user (ARPU) in the telecom business disappointed investors.
Jet Airways India Ltd slid 5.7%, falling for third consecutive sessions after the carrier suspended all its flights.