The Indian stock market opened lower on weak global cues and stayed in the red right through the session as investors kept pressing sales, amid concerns about near term economic outlook.
Besides a lack of triggers from the global front, concerns about equity dilution following the regulator's directive that promoters' shareholding should be brought down to 25% and 10% in public and private companies, respectively.
FMCG, consumer durables, power and metal stocks mostly ended notably lower. Shares from oil, banking and capital goods sectors too traded weak. Automobile, realty and information technology stocks found modest support at lower levels, while healthcare stocks outperformed.
The BSE benchmark Sensex, which surged to 19,717.26 early on in the session, ended the day with a loss of 91.37 points or 0.46% at 19,659.82, nearly 30 points off the day's low. The Nifty index of the National Stock Exchange, which declined to 5946.90, settled at 5956.90, recording a loss of 30.35 points or 0.51%.
BHEL extended recent losses on weak results, and ended lower by over 3%. Bharti Airtel, Sterlite Industries, Tata Motors, ITC, Tata Power and Hero Motocorp lost 1.4% - 2%.
ICICI Bank and Jindal Steel & Power ended lower by around 1.2%. Reliance Industries and Dr Reddy's Laboratories also lost over 1%. Hindustan Unilever, HDFC Bank and Coal India too closed weak.
Jaiprakash Associates ended lower by 4.2%. Bank of Baroda lost 2.3%. BPCL, HCL Technologies, Sesa Goa, Axis Bank and Power Grid Corporation also ended notably lower.
Sun Pharmaceutical Industries moved up by 3.7%. Ranbaxy Laboratories gained 1.5% and Cipla climbed up 1.3%. Bajaj Auto, GAIL India, State Bank of India, Kotak Bank, DLF, Tata Steel and Coal India closed with smart gains.
Cement stocks Ambuja Cements (3%), ACC (1.9%) and Ultratech Cement (1.6%) and Grasim Industries (1%) also ended on a firm note.
United Spirits moved higher on strong quarterly results. REC and Escorts also saw some strong buying on impressive earnings reports. Jain Irrigation Systems and Uco Bank declined on disappointing quarterly numbers.
The market breadth was weak. out of 2953 stocks traded on BSE, 1417 stocks declined. 819 stocks moved up and 717 stocks ended flat.