The benchmark Sensex today almost scaled the record 26,000 level but profit-booking in oil&gas, metal and power shares dragged it down to log the first drop in five days even as trading on the BSE was disrupted for three hours due to network outage.
The S&P BSE Sensex closed at 25,823.75, down 17.46 points from yesterday’s close, after hitting life-time high of 25,999.08. Trading was halted at BSE from 9.42 AM for about three hours due to network outage.
Weakness in shares of RIL, ONGC, Hero MotoCorp, Bajaj Auto, Maruti Suzuki, SBI and ICICI Bank weighed on the Sensex. Out of 30-share pack, 19 ended lower and 11 finished higher.
Intra-day, the Sensex hit a low of 25,793.70.
The index had gained over 778 points in the previous four days on rising hopes of a growth-oriented Budget next week.
The NSE 50-share Nifty today moved down 10.35 points, or 0.13 per cent, to finish at 7,714.80 after hitting all-time high level of 7,754.65 in early trade.
“Markets were seen making a positive start on Thursday, extending its northward journey as sentiments got some support from Agriculture Minister’s statement that monsoon will pick up pace next week and the government is prepared to deal with any eventuality in case of a shortfall.
“However, soon the index entered into negative terrain and then kept trading with negative bias as investors opted to book profits,” said Jayant Manglik, President-retail distribution, Religare Securities.
Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares worth a net Rs 1290.68 crore yesterday as per provisional data.
Asian stocks ended mixed before US jobs reports and a Euro-area monetary-policy decision. Key benchmark indices in Hong Kong, South Korea, Hong Kong and Japan declined by 0.08-0.21 per cent while indices in China, Singapore and Taiwan moved up by 0.19-0.44 per cent.
However, European markets were trading higher. Key indices in France, Germany and the UK moved up 0.42-0.48 per cent.
Commenting on Indian markets, Jignesh Chaudhary, Head of Research, Veracity Broking Services said: “FIIs continued to be on the buying side which helped local markets to touch new milestones.”
Major Sensex losers included Hero Motocorp (3.17 per cent) Hindalco (2.47 per cent), Bajaj Auto (2.39 per cent), ONGC (1.99 per cent), Tata Power (1.88 per cent), NTPC (1.19 per cent), Reliance Industries (1.09 per cent), HUL (1.07 per cent) and Tata Steel (0.80 per cent).
However, Tata Motors rose 3.03 per cent, followed by Wipro 2.58 per cent, Sun Pharma 1.79 per cent, M&M 1.41 per cent and TCS 0.86 per cent.
Among the S&P BSE sectoral indices, Realty fell by 1.47 per continued…