Equity markets continue free fall (Noon Lead)

September 15th, 2008 - 2:24 pm ICT by IANS  

SensexMumbai, Sep 15 (IANS) Indian equity markets continued their free fall Monday morning on the back of news that Lehman Bros of the US had decided to file for bankruptcy and due to terror attacks in New Delhi.A little after noon, the 30-share benchmark sensitive index of the Bombay Stock Exchange, the Sensex, fell further to 13,250.89, down 749.92 points or 5.36 percent to its previous close.

At the same time, the broader 50-share S&P Nifty index of the National Stock Exchange also fell and was down 244.25 points or 5.78 percent to breach the 4,000 mark to 3,984.20 points as against its previous close Friday at 4,228.45.

The world’s fourth largest investment bank, Lehman Bros filed for bankruptcy under US laws after failing to find any white night to bail it out from its troubles.

The bad news together with nervousness arising from Saturday’s serial bombings in the national capital found investors resorting to panic selling.

The Bank of America Corp’s decision to acquire the other ailing global investment bank Merrill Lynch of the US failed to cheer up investors.

News of the $50 billion (Rs.2 trillion) all-stock transaction that will create a company unrivalled in its breadth of financial services and global reach, however, pushed up stocks elsewhere in the world.

Except the Hong Kong stock market share index Hang Seng which was down 0.18 percent, the New York Stock Exchange index was up 1.01 percent, the Nasdaq composite index was up 0.14 percent and the Tokyo Stock Exchange index Nikkei 225 was up 0.93 percent.

Indian investors, however, remained in the grip of panic selling.

A little after noon, the BSE midcap index fell further and was down 322.75 points or 5.83 percent to 5,214.39.

The BSE small cap index was down 374.95 points or 5.59 percent to 6,336.59.

The market sentiment was negative.

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