Sensex sheds 144 points in late sell-off, bank stocks sink

Mumbai, FEB 14: Benchmark Sensex succumbed to fag-end profit-booking to end 144 points lower on Wednesday after banking stocks tumbled on RBI’s new norms for recognising stressed assets.
Punjab National Bank (PNB) plunged 9.81 percent after the state-owned lender said it has detected fraudulent transactions worth $1.77 billion (about R 11,335 crore). In a bid to hasten the resolution of bad loans, the RBI has tightened rules to make banks identify and tackle any non-payment of loans rapidly.
The Reserve Bank of India abolished half a dozen existing loan-restructuring mechanisms and instead provided for a strict 180-day timeline for banks to agree on a resolution plan in case of a default or else refer the account for bankruptcy. The benchmark BSE index opened higher at 34,436.98 on positive domestic and global cues and advanced to hit a high of 34,473.43. However, it slipped on profit-booking to touch a low of 34,028.68. It finally ended 144.52 points or 0.42 percent down at 34,155.95. The NSE Nifty settled the day 38.85 points or 0.37 percent lower at 10,500.90 after shuttling between 10,590.55 and 10,456.65, intra-day. (Agencies)