Benchmark indices opened the day lower on mounting tensions between Iran and the US. According to reports Iran's top commander General Qassem Soleimani has been killed in a U.S. drone strike in Baghdad, on Thursday night following reports of his death on Iranian state television and Iraqi media.
Brent Crude Oil rallied 4.3 per cent to $69.14, while WTI jumped 4.3 per cent to $63.84 per barrel. Analysts see a further rally in pries in the coming days.
The Sensex was trading with losses of 140 points, while the Nifty dropped 46 points in trade. Leading the set of gainers in trade were the oil and gas exploration companies including the likes of ONGC and Oil India. Both tend to gain, when crude oil prices jump.
Shares in GAIL jumped as much as 4 per cent at Rs 128.30. Oil marketing companies, which tend to get hit when crude prices rally, were the most impacted. Indian Oil, HPCL and BPCL were among the losers in trade.
Heavyweight stocks like Reliance Industries, HDFC and HDFC Bank which have pushed benchmark indices higher, were among the losers in trade.