Sensex slumps most since April, falls 1.96% as RIL drags

Reliance slides 4.42% after shelving stake sale to Aramco

The benchmark S&P BSE Sensex slumped the most in about seven months on Monday, sliding 1.96% amid concerns about the government’s ability to sustain reforms after the announcement that the three contentious farm laws would be repealed, and dragged down by Reliance Industries’ 4.42% decline.

The index fell 1,170.12 points to 58,465.89, the lowest close since mid-September. The top losers included Bajaj Finance (5.74%), Bajaj Finserv (4.69%), NTPC (3.73%) and Titan (3.49%).

Reliance (RIL) slid after a proposed $15-billion stake sale in its oil-to-chemicals business to Saudi Arabia’s Aramco was shelved.

Analysts said Paytm’s disappointing debut and further slide had exacerbated concerns about valuations.

“Subdued listing and continued weak trading of Paytm is a big sentimental setback to the domestic market, which was thriving on the strong primary market,” Vinod Nair, head of research at Geojit Financial Services, said in a note. “It will impact the inflow of money from the retail segment, which has been a key player during the year,” he added.

“High growth expectations have been built into stock market valuations for quite some time now,” said Rahul Shah, Co-Head of Research, Equitymaster. “And if these expectations don’t materialise soon enough, we may see further downward pressure on prices.”

“From a valuations perspective, the broader market is already quite expensive. The only thing holding it up was hopes of a quick recovery in corporate earnings. Any delay there… and there could be more downside,” Mr. Shah added.

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