Markets fall for 2nd day as SC ruling triggers selling in bank stocks

     Mumbai, Feb 14 (PTI) Markets spiralled lower for the second straight day on Friday as banking shares slumped after the Supreme Court took a strong note of telcos not complying with its order to pay Rs 1.47 lakh crore in statutory dues.
     The 30-share BSE Sensex fell by 202.05 points or 0.49 per cent to end at 41,257.74, with 22 of its constituents closing with losses.
     The broader NSE Nifty shed 61.20 points or 0.50 per cent to settle at 12,113.50 as banking, auto, FMCG and energy counters retreated.
     The Supreme Court on Friday directed the top echelons of telecom firms to explain why contempt action should not be taken against them for non-compliance of its order to pay adjusted gross revenue (AGR) dues of Rs 1.47 lakh crore to the telecom department.
     The order raised concerns over banks' exposure to AGR-hit telcos, mainly Vodafone Idea which reported more than Rs 6,000 crore loss for the October-December quarter.
     IndusInd Bank was the top loser in the Sensex pack, dropping 4.38 per cent, followed by PowerGrid, SBI, Hero MotoCorp and NTPC.
     On the other hand, Bharti Airtel was the top gainer, spurting 4.69 per cent, with analysts saying the Indian telecom sector could turn into a duopoly.
     Vodafone Idea, which is staring at statutory dues worth Rs 53,000 crore, plummeted 23.21 per cent.
     "Supreme Court ruling on telecom players instructing them to pay dues by March 17th will impact the asset quality of banks having decent exposure in the sector.
     Banks stocks will be under pressure given high inflation and RBI being unlikely to cut rates in the near-term. Indian market is impacted due to fall in global market due to increase in coronavirus cases," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.
     Rate-sensitive auto stocks dropped as official data showed wholesale inflation rising to 3.1 per cent in January, further reducing prospects of a rate cut by RBI.
     Hero MotoCorp dropped by 2.24 per cent, Mahindra & Mahindra by 1.91 per cent and Maruti by 1.24 per cent.
     FMCG major ITC fell 1.98 per cent and HUL by 1.20 per cent following concerns over rising costs due to pick up in inflation.
     HCL Tech rose 1.42 per cent, ICICI Bank 0.9 per cent, RIL 0.86 per cent and Tech Mahindra by 0.72 per cent, limiting the fall in the Sensex.
     On a weekly basis, the Sensex climbed 115.89 points or 0.28 per cent, while the Nifty gained 15.15 points or 0.12 per cent.
     Globally, Asian markets reeled under the coronavirus threat after a dramatic spurt in the number of deaths and new cases fuelled suspicion that China might be concealing the true scale of the epidemic.
     Tokyo's Nikkei 225 index closed 0.59 per cent lower, but Shanghai recovered from early losses to end up 0.38 per cent.
     London's FTSE 100 fell 0.42 per cent in opening trade while the Paris CAC 40 index shed 0.19 per cent. PTI MR ABM

(This story has not been edited by THE WEEK and is auto-generated from PTI)