After moving in a listless way right through the session, the market ended marginally down today, with investors mostly staying away on the sidelines, choosing to wait for some clear signals for short term. Also, with the market having run up quite sharply over the past few sessions, they appeared keen on booking some profits at select blue chip counters.
Caution ahead of release of some key economic data, worries on the political front and weakness in European markets too contributed to the sluggish movements in the market.
The BSE benchmark Sensex, which declined to 19,602.71 after surging to 19,754.66 early on in the session, ended the day with a loss of 37.02 points or 0.19% at 19,646.21, while the Nifty index of the National Stock Exchange, which touched a high of 5971.20 and a low of 5930.35, settled at 5942.35, down 3.35 points or 0.06% from its previous close.
Consumer durables, information technology and metal stocks mostly ended weak. Oil and automobile stocks too drifted down a bit. Realty stocks had a fairly good session. Select capital goods, healthcare and power stocks posted smart gains. Bank and FMCG stocks turned in a mixed performance.
Hero Motocorp ended lower by around 2.5%. Wipro, Bajaj Auto, Jindal Steel & Power and Tata Consultancy Services lost 1% - 1.4%.
BHEL, Sterlite Industries, Reliance Industries, Infosys, Tata Motors, ICICI Bank, Maruti Suzuki, Hindalco and ONGC also closed weak.
IDFC, BPCL, Reliance Infrastructure, Kotak Bank, Axis Bank, Jaiprakash Associates, Sesa Goa and Lupin ended lower by 0.5% - 1.5%.
Siemens spurted more than 4.5%. DLF ended with a gain of 2.75%. Tata Power gained 2.6%, while Asian Paints and HDFC gained around 2.2%.
Sun Pharmaceutical Industries, Mahindra & Mahindra, HCL Technologies, Larsen & Toubro, Ranbaxy Laboratories, GAIL India, Cairn India and Bank of Baroda also closed on a firm note.
Opto Circuits ended nearly 7.5% up, topping the gainers among BSE 'A' Group stocks. Indraprastha Gas, Jain Irrigation Systems, Madras Cements, ABB, Coromandel International, Adani Enterprises, Shree Cement, Hexaware Technologies, Crompton Greaves, Berger Paints, United Spirits, GMR Infrastructure, Essar Oil, Oriental Bank of Commerce, Indian Bank, Mahindra Satyam, Britannia Industries, Astrazenca Pharma and Asian Paints moved up by 2% - 5%.
Oracle Financial Services, Max India, Gujarat Minerals, NHPC, Neyveli Lignite Corporation, Titan Industries, Adani Ports, Apollo Tyres, Dish TV India, JP Infratech, MMTC, JSW Steel and Pipavav Defence ended weak, losing 2% - 3.5%.
The market breadth was slightly weak. Out of 3003 stocks traded on BSE, 1474 stocks declined. 1395 stocks ended higher and 134 stocks closed flat.