Indian equity benchmarks were trading lower in Monday’s afternoon session following weak cues from Asian markets. Investors feared further interest-rate hikes by the United States Federal Reserve. The rising COVID-19 cases in China also impacted market sentiments. The weakening rupee also weighed down the sentiments, by 8 paise to 81.82 against the dollar at the Interbank Foreign Exchange market on the back of increased demand from importers and banks.

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The Sensex was trading at 61,163.45 down by 500.03 points or 0.81% after trading in a high-low range of 61,456.33 and 61,116.99. On the index, only 4 stocks were advancing against 26 declining.

The broader indices were trading mostly red with the BSE Midcap index down by 0.19% and the Small-cap index up by 0.20%.

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The top losing sectoral indices on the BSE were IT down 1.16%, Energy 1.07%, Oil & Gas 1.03%, Power 0.92%, and Utilities 0.88%. While Telecommunication up by 0.44% was the only gaining sectoral index on the BSE.

The top losers on the Sensex were HDFC down by 1.66%, TCS 1.65%, Bajaj Finance 1.61%, Reliance Industries 1.56%, and Dr. Reddy’s Lab 1.53%. On the flip side, Bharti Airtel up by 1.16%, Hindustan Unilever 1.02%, Axis Bank 0.88%, and Maruti Suzuki 0.24% were the only gainers on the index.

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The Nifty was trading at 18,162.75 down by 146.90 points or 0.80% after trading in a high-low range of 18,262.30 and 18,146.85. On the index, only 9 stocks were advancing, against 39 stocks declining and 2 stable.

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The top losers on Nifty were SBI Life Insurance down 2.10%, Grasim Industries 1.83%, TCS 1.72%, Hero Motocorp 1.72 and Bajaj Finance 1.68%. While BPCL up 1.86%, Hindustan Unilever 1.01%, Bharti Airtel 0.98%, Axis Bank 0.91%, and Britannia Industries 0.44% were the top gainers on the index.

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Asian markets were trading mostly lower, Nikkei 225 rose 0.78%, Shanghai Composite fell 0.45%, KOSPI Composite fell 1.02%, and Hang Seng slipped 1.74%.