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Nifty, Sensex end 1% lower as China virus spreads

A broker trades on his computer terminal at a stock brokerage firm in Mumbai

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Indian shares ended sharply lower on Monday, led by a slide in metals and banking stocks, as fears about the economic impact of a virus outbreak in China weighed on sentiment.

The death toll from the coronavirus outbreak in China rose to 81 and the virus spread to more than 10 countries, including France, Japan and the United States. Some health experts questioned whether China can contain the epidemic.

The Nifty ended 1.06% lower at 12,119.00, while the Sensex shed 1.10% to settle at 41,155.12.

The Nifty metals index slid 3.09%, clocking its worst one-day decline since Sept. 3, 2019, with mining and metals group Vedanta Ltd being the top decliner in the Nifty 50 with a 4.5% drop.

The Nifty PSU banking index, which tracks state-run lenders, ended 2.25% weaker.

Global markets also dropped lower amid growing worries about the financial impact of the spreading coronavirus, while demand spiked for safe-haven assets such as the Japanese yen and Treasury notes.

Investors are worried about the impact on travel, tourism and broader economic activity.

(Reporting by Sachin Ravikumar, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)