Global markets jittery, Brent down 3%, gold hits record high

Mumbai: Trading screens across global stock markets flashed red, oil prices took a sharp dip and the prices of safe haven assets rose sharply on Monday as the Coronavirus impact magnified.

Indian markets opened sharply lower in line with global markets after Coronavirus related death toll rose significantly in and outside China. Led by a sell-off in manufacturing sector stocks, the benchmark Sensex and Nifty fell over 1 per cent.

Brent, the global oil benchmark fell nearly 3 per cent to $57 a barrel as worries over the impact of Coronavirus on global growth increased.

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At 9.29 a.m., the Sensex was down 443.69 points or 1.08 per cent to 40,726.43 while the Nifty lost over 138 points to 11,942.55. The benchmark Sensex opened above the 41,000 mark.

The Coronavirus outbreak which the Chinese President Xi Jinping has called the “largest public health emergency since the founding of the country”, has claimed nearly 2,600 lives and infected more than 77,000 people in China.

South Korea and Italy raised alert due to the soaring Coronavirus cases. South Korea reported its seventh coronavirus death and 161 new confirmed cases on Monday bringing the total number to 763.

Meanwhile, Gold’s record breaking run continued on Monday as investors sought more and more safe haven assets over increased uncertainty due to soaring Coronavirus cases.

Gold futures for April delivery hit a fresh record high of above Rs 43,000 per 10 gm aided by a weakening rupee. The domestic currency opened 24 paise lower at 71.89 per dollar from Friday’s close of 71.65.

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