After a listless start and a subsequent rise to higher levels, the market traded in a tight range almost right through the session, with investors treading cautiously amid a lack of triggers.
A weak close on Wall Street overnight amid worries about the possibility of a government shutdown, and the resultant subdued trend in Asian markets rendered price movements quite sluggish at the Indian ring.
Due to expiry of near month derivatives contracts, movements were a bit volatile at times at several front line counters. With the reporting season not far away and fears of further rate hike by the central bank too rendering the mood cautious, buying interest was quite subdued.
The BSE benchmark Sensex, which rose to a high of 19,997.28, ended at 19,893.85, recording a gain of 37.61 points or 0.19%. The Nifty index of the National Stock Exchange closed at 5882.25, over 35 points off the day's high of 5917.65, gaining 8.40 points or 0.14%.
Following the Reserve Bank of India's announcement that it is closely and continuously monitoring liquidity conditions in the banking system and will take actions as appropriate, including open market operations, to ensure that adequate liquidity is available to support the flow of credit to productive sectors of the economy, bond prices surged higher.
Healthcare, power, capital goods, FMCG and metal stocks moved higher. Oil, consumer durables and realty stocks closed weak. Information technology, bank and automobile stocks turned in a mixed performance.
Jindal Steel & Power, Ambuja Cements, Punjab National Bank, GAIL India, Reliance Infrastructure, Grasim Industries, Hero Motocorp, Power Grid Corporation, Sesa Goa, State Bank of India, DLF, Reliance Industries, Axis Bank, ONGC, HCL Technologies and Tata Consultancy Services ended with sharp to moderate losses.
Gillette India rose sharply after the market regulator SEBI said that shareholding of Podda Heritage Group would be considered part of public shareholding subject to fulfillment of certain conditions.
The market breadth was almost even. Out of 2460 stocks traded on BSE, 1183 stocks moved up. 1134 stocks declined and 143 stocks ended flat.