Sensex slips below 34k level, down 131 points in early trade

Mumbai, Feb 19: The benchmark BSE Sensex slipped below the 34,000-mark by falling nearly 131 points in early trade today, extending Friday's losses as investors cut bets amid weak domestic sentiment and absence of Asian cues. 

The 30-share barometer dropped by 130.54 points, or 0.38 per cent, to 33,880.22 in early trade led by fall in Tata Steel, SBI, Reliance Industries and L&T. 

The gauge had lost 286.71 points in the previous on Friday. The Nifty50 index also fell 47.40 points, or 0.45 per cent, at 10,404.90. Brokers said investors trimmed positions on distinctly weak sentiment since the detection of a massive Rs 11,400-crore fraud at state-run Punjab National Bank. Shares of PNB remained under selling pressure and lost another 5.25 per cent.

Other laggards were Tata Steel, SBI, L&T, IndusInd Bank, Adani Ports, M&M, Hindustan Unilever, Bharti Airtel, Asian Paint, Bajaj Auto, Yes Bank, ONGC, Coal India and Reliance Industries, falling up to 3.22 per cent. 

Meanwhile, foreign portfolio investors continued selling on domestic bourses. On net basis, they sold shares worth Rs 1,065.99 crore, while domestic institutional investors made purchases to the tune of Rs 1,127.78 crore on Friday, provisional data showed. 

Globally, in the Asian region, Japan's Nikkei rose 1.33 per cent, while markets in Hong Kong and China remained shut today on account of a public holiday. The US Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.08 per cent higher on Friday. 


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