Extending losses for the second day, equity benchmarks closed at one-week lows with the Sensex ending below the 26,000 mark and the Nifty ending at 7,748.70 as investors booked profits in recent out-performers in sectors including realty, metals, oil & gas.
The BSE Sensex and the NSE Nifty were seen trading with negative bias ahead of tomorrow’s trading holiday and July F&O expiry on Thursday. Market breadth was largely negative. Small-cap and mid-cap indices fell due to persistent selling pressure from retail investors.
The 30-share index Sensex resumed higher at 26,173.47 hovered in a range of 26,181.83 and 25,900.25 before ending at 25,991.23, showing a loss of 135.52 points or 0.52 per cent from Friday’s closing. It has now dropped 280.62 points, or 1.07 per cent, in two consecutive sessions.
Today’s closing is its weakest since July 21 (25,715.17).
The CNX 50-share Nifty dropped by 41.75 points, or 0.54 per cent, to close at one-week low of 7,748.70. On Friday, it had slipped by over 40 points.
In eight straight trading sessions (July 15-24), the Sensex and the Nifty spurted by over 5 per cent to hit lifetime highs.
Stocks of FMCG major Hindustan Unilever gained 3.69 per cent after the company today reported increase in standalone net profit at Rs 1,056.85 crore for the June quarter.
Among major losers, Coal India suffered the most by plunging over 3 per cent, the most in three weeks. Other laggards include Hindalco Industries, Tata Steel, RIL, ICICI Bank, SBI, Hero MotoCorp, M&M and Bajaj Auto.
Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPIs) bought shares worth a net Rs 125.51 crore on last Friday, as per provisional data.
In Asia, Chinese stocks led gains by jumping over 2 per cent on strong growth in profit at industrial companies in June 2014. Key indices in China, Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea ended higher by 0.20 per cent to 2.41 per cent while Taiwan weighted index declined by 0.20 per cent.
European markets were trading mixed in their early trade as investors weighed company earnings and awaited data on American services and home sales. Key indices and France and UK firmed up by 0.15 per cent to 0.48 per cent while Germany’s DAX was quoting lower by 0.03 per cent.
Jignesh Chaudhary, Head of Research, Veracity Broking Services said: “Indian local indices lost their way and traded weak as the day progressed. Profit booking continued as investors preferred to stay cautious at higher levels.”
Twenty one scrips ended lower out of the 30-share Sensex pack while only nine finished higher.
Major losers were Coal India 3.14 per cent, Hindalco 2.06 per cent, Tata Motors 1.89 per cent, Tata Steel 1.72 per cent, ICICI Bank 1.65 per cent, Hero Motocorp 1.62 per cent, Reliance Ind 1.61 per cent, ONGC 1.41 per cent, M&M 1.28 per cent and Cipla 1.17 per cent.
However, HUL rose by 3.69 continued…