BENGALURU, March 9 (Reuters) - Indian shares followed a slide in global peers on Monday as fears intensified over the spread of coronavirus outbreak and oil prices plunged.
Energy and metals stocks bore the brunt of the losses, as the NSE Nifty 50 index fell 3.70% to 10,582.90 by 0422 GMT, while the S&P BSE Sensex was down 3.86% at 36,125.45.
The Nifty hit its lowest since February 2019 and was on course for its worst day since August 2015.
A sell-off triggered by the economic fallout of the virus outbreak has wiped 9% off the Nifty in the past two weeks, with the drop worsened by the turmoil at Yes Bank, one of the country’s largest lenders.
The virus outbreak has now infected over 107,000 people worldwide, claiming more than 3,300 lives and disrupting business supply chains.
Oil prices plunged around 25% on Monday, heading towards their biggest daily loss since 1991 after Saudi Arabia slashed prices and set plans for a big increase in crude production in April.
“The news flow has been quite pathetic. People are talking about a contraction in global GDP due to the coronavirus,” said Saurabh Jain, assistant vice president of research at SMC Global Securities in New Delhi.
“Nobody has a clue how things will improve going forward.”
Global share markets tumbled on Monday, with the MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan losing 3.7% in its worst day since 2015.
Shares in Yes Bank were up 10% in choppy trade, having fallen 56% on Friday. A court on Sunday remanded its founder in police custody after he was arrested on money-laundering charges, following a move by the central bank to take control of the lender.
The Nifty banking index was down 3.7%, hitting its lowest since September.
State-run Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd was among the few gainers in the Nifty, rising 5.3%, after India’s government invited initial bids on Saturday to buy a majority stake in the oil refining firm.
Shares in oil-to-telecoms conglomerate Reliance Industries Ltd were down 6%, while state-run Oil and Natural Gas Corp plunged 9.6% amid the rout in oil prices.
The rupee firmed 0.11% to 73.8975 against the dollar, after hitting its lowest since October 2018 on Friday. (Reporting by Sachin Ravikumar; Editing by Aditya Soni)