Domestic equity benchmark BSE Sensex started on a choppy note on Wednesday tracking weakness in metal and banking stocks amid tepid cues from global markets. After opening slightly higher than its previous close, the 30-share index slipped into the red to trade 12.46 points, or 0.03 per cent, lower at 37,628.81 at 0930 hours, while the broader Nifty fell 7.30 points, or 0.06 per cent, to 11,098.05 in early trade.
In the previous session, the BSE barometer closed 147.15 points, or 0.39 per cent, higher at 37,641.27; and the Nifty rose 47.50 points, or 0.43 per cent, to 11,105.35.
Top gainers in the Sensex pack in early trade on Wednesday included Tata Motors, HCL Tech, Bajaj Auto, TechM, Sun Pharma, PowerGrid, Infosys and ITC, that rose up to 3 per cent.
On the other hand, Tata Steel, Maruti, HUL, Kotak Bank and ONGC fell up to 2 per cent.
Foreign portfolio investors sold shares worth a net of Rs 923.94 crore on Tuesday, while domestic institutional investors purchased shares worth Rs 1,162.65 crore, provisional data showed.
The rupee, meanwhile, turned flat against its previous close to trade at 71.48 in early session.
Elsewhere in Asia, bourses in Hong Kong, Korea and Japan were trading a tad higher in their respective late morning sessions, while those in China slipped into the red.
Exchanges on Wall Street too ended on a negative note on Tuesday.
Global oil benchmark Brent crude was trading 0.68 per cent higher at 59.43 per barrel.
Rupee slips 9 paise to 71.57 vs USD in early trade
The rupee depreciated marginally by 9 paise to 71.57 against the US dollar in early trade on Wednesday amid unabated foreign fund outflows and cautious opening in domestic equities.
Forex traders said concerns about US-China trade spat kept market participants edgy. Rupee and most Asian currencies like South Korean won, Thai Baht, Malaysian ringgit, Japanese yen and Indonesian rupiah were trading lower, they added.
At the interbank foreign exchange, the rupee opened weak at 71.50 then fell to 71.57 against the US dollar, showing a decline of 9 paise over its previous closing.
The domestic currency however pared the initial losses and was trading at 71.51 against the American currency at 0943 hours.
The Indian rupee on Tuesday had closed at 71.48 against the US dollar.
Traders said cautious opening in domestic equities, strengthening of the American unit vis-a-vis other currencies overseas, rising crude oil prices and foreign fund outflows weighed on the local unit.
Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, rose 0.67 per cent to USD 59.91 per barrel.
Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) remained net sellers in the capital markets, pulling out Rs 923.94 crore on Tuesday, as per provisional data.
Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback’s strength against a basket of six currencies, was trading at 98.07, higher by 0.08 per cent.
The 10-year government bond yield was at 6.52 per cent in morning trade.
Domestic bourses opened on a cautious note on Wednesday with benchmark indices Sensex trading 28.78 points down at 37,612.49 and Nifty higher by 11.50 points at 11,093.85.