Retreating from a record, the benchmark Sensex today fell for the first time in four days and closed over 167 points down on profit-booking in power and oil&gas stocks after new Prime Minister Narendra Modi assigned portfolios to his council of ministers.
After gaining nearly 419 points in previous three days to close at its highest ever level, the BSE Sensex succumbed to profit-booking in recent gainers and closed 167.37 points, or 0.68 per cent, lower at 24,549.51 after shuttling between 24,777.31 and 24,422.33 intra-day.
Shares of RIL, GAIL, SBI, HDFC, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, Tata Motors, Maruti and M&M were among the 21 Sensex losers.
Yesterday, the 30-share benchmark index had ended at its new closing high of 24,716.88 in a highly volatile session that saw it breaching 25,000-mark for the second time ever.
Traders say investors are adopting a cautious stance this week that will see expiry of derivative contracts on Thursday. Gains of almost 10.25 per cent in May so far have also prompted them to take some gains off the table, they added.
The 50-scrip NSE Nifty, which had lost 8.05 points yesterday, ended down 41.05 points, or 0.56 per cent, at 7318.
A narrowing current account deficit at 1.7 per cent of GDP in FY’14 from 4.7 per cent in FY’13 was apparently ignored by market participants, said equity dealers.
Selling activity was seen picking up in mid and small-cap stocks largely in line with overall trends, they added.
“Today’s fall was expected by players as the formation of the new government at the Centre was already factored in”, said Vinod Gupta, a Delhi-based stock broker.
Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold shares worth a net Rs 84.13 crore yesterday as per provisional data.
The BSE PSU index suffered the most by losing 2.41 per cent. Sectorally, Power index shed 2.14 per cent and Oil & Gas sector index lost 1.92 per cent.
Auto index fell by 1.31 per cent, Realty index ended 0.90 per cent down, Consumer durables index slipped 0.62 per cent, and Banking index lost 0.61 per cent.
Bucking the trend, shares of IT, teck and healthcare continued their upward journey.