The BSE benchmark Sensex on Tuesday ended below the 16,000 level, losing 287 points on brisk selling by foreign funds amid weak global trend on fears of worsening euro-zone debt crisis and a sharp dip in banking stocks led by SBI after its rating was lowered.
The Sensex, which lost over 546 points in the last two trading sessions, plunged further by 286.59 points or 1.77 per cent to 15,864.86, with most of the banking and other interest related stocks ending sharply lower. It last dipped below the 16,000 mark on August 26.
The broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty dropped 77.35 points, or 1.60 per cent to 4,772.15 and tested day’s low of 4,728.30 on all-round selling.
Banking heavyweight, State Bank of India plunged after reports that Moody’s Investors Service has lowered the financial strength rating of the largest lender. It plunged over 4.08 per cent to its lowest close in two years, pulling down the banking index by 3.09 per cent to Rs. 10,291.03.
The biggest private lender ICICI Bank also shed 4.59 per cent to Rs. 800.70.
Auto sector index was the second worst performer, losing 1.94 per cent to 8,300.87. Oil and gas sector index dropped by 1.72 per cent to 8,281.76 as the sector major and Sensex heaviest-weighed Reliance Industries fell 2 per cent. The second heaviest Infosys also fell 1.44 per cent.
Globally, stocks in Asia and Europe were weak as hopes of resolution over Greece’s debt crisis faded, strengthening fears of a worldwide economic slowdown.
The market barometer has lost 23 per cent this year on a string of investor worries ranging from inflation and high interest rates domestically to global economic slowdown.