Indian markets were witnessing selling pressure in line with Asian peers as economic growth concerns in the Europe and the US hurt sentiments.
FII flows also have been very volatile in last few sessions. The global news of escalating sovereign debt problems in Europe and an unexpected rise in jobless claims in US have put investors on the defensive mode globally and its repercussions will be witnessed in our markets too, said Anand Rathi report.
First time jobless claims for the week ended Jan 31 in the US rose by 8000 to 480,000, the forecast being a drop of 10,000. Concerns related to sovereign credit and rising government deficits of European countries fuelled widespread investor flight from risk, boosting U.S. Treasuries and the Japanese yen as safe havens.
At 10:10 am, Bombay Stock Exchanges Sensex was at 15883.91, down 341.04 points or 2.10 per cent. The index touched a low of 15790.49 and high of 16222.56 in trade so far.
National Stock Exchanges Nifty was at 4735.75, down 109.60 points or 2.26 per cent. The 50-share index hit a low of 4715.55 and high of 4827.
Nifty has breached all major support levels and chances of sustained positive momentum remain extremely low till Nifty does not breach 4960 mark. Also yesterday Nifty failed to breach and close above 4960 mark. Going ahead support on lower side remains at 4800 first and then around levels of 4540.
We still advise investors to limit their exposure to front line counters and wait for Nifty to cross and close above 4960 mark. For todays trade, key support for the day remains at 4790-4800 levels. Hurdle is seen around 4890-4900 range on higher side. Breach above or below above mentioned range may provide fresh trading opportunity, said Reliance Money report.
BSE Midcap Index was down 2.83 per cent and BSE Smallcap Index moved 3.08 per cent lower.
Amongst the sectoral indices, BSE Realty Index was down 3.68 per cent, BSE Metal Index fell 3.28 per cent and BSE Bankex declined 2.72 per cent.
Tata Steel (-3.79%), Jaiprakash Associates (-3.70%), DLF (-3.22%), Tata Motors (-3.14%) and Hindalco Industries (-3.04%) were amongst the top Sensex losers and no gainers.
Market breadth was negative on the BSE with 2100 declines and 293 advances.
Meanwhile, the Dow briefly fell below the crucial 10,000 mark on Thursday as stocks suffered their worst losses in more than nine months. Escalating sovereign debt problems in Europe and an unexpected rise in jobless claims put investors on the defensive just ahead of Friday's crucial payrolls report.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 268.37 points, or 2.61 per cent, to close at 10,002.18. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index dropped 34.17 points, or 3.11 per cent, to close at 1,063.11. The Nasdaq Composite Index lost 65.48 points, or 2.99 per cent, to close at 2,125.43.
Stocks across the Asia-Pacific region also plunged as commodities slid with the increase in US jobless claims data. The Nikkei slumped 2.49 per cent, Hang Seng declined 2.91 per cent and Taiwan Weighted lost 4.20 per cent.