The BSE Sensex retreated from record highs to close 37 points lower on Wednesday due to profit booking in banking and infrastructure stocks by cautious investors after the recent rally.
The 30-share barometer closed lower by 37.40 points or 0.08 per cent at 44,618.04.
The broader NSE Nifty edged higher by 4.70 points or 0.04 per cent to end at its fresh record high of 13,113.75.
Banking stocks bore the brunt of profit selling ahead of the RBI policy announcement this week. Kotak Bank was top loser among Sensex stocks, dropping by 3.28 per cent.
HDFC Bank declined by 1.86 per cent, HDFC by 1.28 per cent and ICICI Bank by 0.99 per cent. SBI fell 0.5 per cent while Bajaj Finance by 0.72 per cent.
Larsen & Toubro dropped 0.16 per cent.
Markets had opened with losses as investors were cautious over a possible US stimulus package. However, the UK’s approval for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine cheered investors helping the indices to limit losses, analysts said.
Among major gainers, ONGC rose the most by 4.11 per cent, followed by Asian Paints (3.74 per cent) and Titan (3.48 per cent). Auto stocks gained after the companies reported sales growth in the domestic market in November, aided by robust offtakes amid the festival season.
Bajaj Auto rose by 2.86 per cent, Mahindra and Mahindra by 2.53 per cent and Maruti Suzuki by 1.47 per cent.
IT major TCS and Infosys recovered from early lows to close higher by 0.81 per cent and 0.33 per cent, respectively.
Other Asian markets were mixed, with the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo and the Shanghai Composite index in China edging 0.1 per cent higher, and South Korea’s Kospi gaining 1.6 per cent.
Hong Kong’s Hang Seng dropped 0.2 per cent while Australian shares closed almost flat.
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