Adverse global factors and fears of economic slowdown amid inflation above the RBI's tolerance level pulled down the Bombay Stock Exchange benchmark Sensex by a huge 9 per cent or 1,603 points over the week under review, making it the biggest post-budget weekly fall.
The week also left behind footprints of a bear phase with the US economic data released on Friday showing a fall in employment in February, heightening worries about the economy.
Crude oil prices also remained above 100-dollar level and hovered around its record high and the US credit crisis continued to cast a shadow on the global economy.
Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) too have adopted a cautious approach in the prevailing situation after the dollar continued to seek new lows against the basket of currencies in overseas markets.
FIIs pulled out nearly Rs 1,286 crore from equity in the initial three days of week. They are net sellers to the tune of Rs 13,630 crore so far in the current calendar year.
The Bombay Stock Exchange 30-share index breached 16K level for the first time after September 17, 2007, raising fears of a bear phase.
In the week to March 8, the Sensex plunged by 1,603.20 points or 9.12 per cent to end the week at 15,975.52 from its last weekend's close of 17,578.72.
Similarly, the National Stock Exchange's S&P CNX Nifty also tumbled by 451.90 points or 8.65 per cent to close the week at 4,771.60 from previous weekend's close of 5,223.50.
The proposal to hike the short-term capital gains tax and another of Rs 60,000 crore loan-waiver also contributed to the bourses slide.