Nifty Hits Lower Circuit For The First Time Since May 2009
A person looks at a screen and electronic ticker board show outside the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building in Mumbai, India. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

Nifty Hits Lower Circuit For The First Time Since May 2009

India’s equity benchmark tumbled 10 percent in early session to hit the lower circuit, triggering a trading halt for the first time since May 2009, as panic gripped the market amid the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Trading was suspended for 45 minutes. The Sensex had slumped 9.4 percent in the early session. But on resuming trade, the benchmarks pared their opening losses to trade nearly 1 percent higher before slipping back into the red as of 11 a.m.

A day before, the Indian equities had entered the bear territory, tracking the global peers that are witnessing their worst selloff since the 2008 criris, as the spreading pandemic Covid-19 threatens to stall economic growth.

Nifty Hits Lower Circuit For The First Time Since May 2009

The plunge in the early trade wiped off $159.4-billion from India’s market capitalisation in six minutes. The equity investors have lost more than Rs 30 lakh crore so far this week as the benchmark indices are set for their worst weekly fall.

Nifty Hits Lower Circuit For The First Time Since May 2009

Also read: What Are Circuit Breakers and Do They Calm Markets?

To be sure, trading will stop again for 1 hour and 45 minutes if losses exceed 15 percent before 1 p.m., and for 45 minutes between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. Trading will halt for rest of the day if the 50-stock index extend decline to 15 percent on or after 2 p.m.

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