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Sensex Plunges On Falling Rupee, Rising Oil Prices

The Indian stock market opened notably lower on Monday, weighed down by a weak rupee and rising crude oil prices. A sell-off at the Reliance Industries counter contributed as well to the sharp decline of the key indices in early trades.

The BSE benchmark Sensex is down 257.74 points or 0.66%, at 38,882.54, after falling to a low of 38,828.77.

The National Stock Exchange's Nifty50 is down 89.45 points, or 0.76%, at 11,663.35, off a low of 11,646.15.

The market, which was closed on Friday for Good Friday, ended weak on Thursday, snapping a four-day winning streak. The Sensex lost about 0.34% and the Nifty ended lower by 0.29%, at 39,140.28 and 11,752.80, respectively.

The rupee, which recovered smartly on Thursday after a three-session losing streak, opened at 69.75 a dollar this morning and then weakened to 69.81, hurt by higher crude oil prices.

Reliance Industries shed more than 2%. Reliance Industries reported after trading hours on Thursday that its consolidated net profit increased 9.8% to Rs 10,362 crore in the quarter ended March 2019. Net sales rose 18.6% in the fourth quarter, the company said.

Bharti Airtel and IndusInd Bank also lost more than 2%. Yes Bank, Axis Bank, Asian Paints, Kotak Bank, ICICI Bank, State Bank of India and Tata Motors lost 1 to 1.7%.

Shares of state-run Hindustan Petroleum Corporation, BPCL and Indian Oil Corporation are down 3 to 4.7% after crude oil prices rose sharply amid prospects of tougher U.S. sanctions against Iran.

Airlines stock Jet Airways declined to Rs 126.65, and despite recovering to Rs 141.70, is down as much as 14% from previous close. According to reports, the Jet Airways management has asked the government to release Rs 175 crore to pay one-month of salary to its staff.

HDFC Bank, which reported a near 23% jump in fourth quarter net profit, opened on a firm note, but pared most of its gains subsequently.

HDFC Bank reported a net profit of Rs 5,885.12 crore in the fourth quarter ended March 2019. Percentage of gross NPA stood at 1.36% as of March 31, 2019, against 1.38% as on December 31, 2019. Net NPA was 0.4% at the end of the fourth quarter.

Larsen & Toubro, Sun Pharmaceutical Industries and NTPC were up marginally, while HCL Technologies, Infosys, Tata Consultancy Services and Power Grid Corporation added 0.5 to 1%.

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