Market benchmark Sensex hit an air pocket for the second straight day as it tumbled by over 159 points to 25,679 due to profit-booking amid weak global cues ahead of two key central bank meetings. US Fed and Bank of Japan are set to meet this week to decide on their next policy move.
Caution set in as the second part of Parliament’s Budget session got under way today, with concerns persisting over passage of proposed Bills and focus shifting to the key Goods and Services Tax Bill, which is dubbed as the country’s biggest indirect tax reform since Independence.
Investors also remained on tenterhooks as derivatives contracts are set to expire this Thursday.
The 30-share index opened higher and climbed further before profit-booking surfaced and pulled it down to 25,678.93 at the close, a loss of 159.21 points, or 0.62 per cent.
The barometer had lost 42.24 points in the previous session.
The 50-share NSE Nifty settled lower by 44.25 points, or 0.56 per cent, at 7,855.05. Intra-day, it shuttled between 7,911 and 7,827.
“The market gave up earlier gains due to the fear of upcoming global events like FOMC and BoJ meet, which refrain the investors from going long. This week’s F&O expiry, along with turmoil due to earnings, is impacting the market,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit BNP Paribas.
Sentiment remained off-colour as Asian and European shares turned weak after investors moved cautiously ahead of policy meetings of the US Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan this week.
The rupee lost its heft against the dollar at 66.61, which weighed on mood.
Of the 30-share Sensex pack, 21 lost while 9 ended higher.
RIL dropped 2.18 per cent despite the company reporting a 16 per cent jump in its net profit since there is no clarity on launch of Jio service and the company said it is going to increase its capex and spending.
Maruti Suzuki, ONGC, NTPC, Tata Steel, HDFC Ltd, BHEL, ITC, Sun Pharma and Tata Motors all fell.
Bharti Airtel broke from the crowd, topped the gainers’ list by climbing 1.63 per cent after the company said its board will consider share buyback or a final dividend, or a combination of both, at its meeting on Wednesday.
TCS, Bajaj Auto, Hindustan Unilever, M&M, Adani Ports, and ICICI Bank, ended higher, cushioning the fall.
Cairn India tumbled 4.13 per cent after the company suffered its biggest quarterly loss of Rs 10,948 crore in the March quarter following an impairment charge.
Sectorally, BSE power index took the biggest knock, falling 1.43 per cent, followed by metal 1.06 per cent and infrastructure 1.05 per cent.
Tracking the overall trend, the broader markets witnessed selling, with the small-cap index declining 0.39 per cent and mid-cap shedding 0.14 per cent.
Foreign investors net purchased shares worth Rs 191.07 crore on Friday, provisional data showed.
“Only IT stocks could escape from today’s selling pressure while auto and FMCG dragged the index to lower levels,” said Pramit Brahmbhatt of Veracity Financial Services.
The market breadth remained negative as 1,541 shares ended lower, 1,072 closed higher while 150 went flat.
The total turnover rose to Rs 4,413.64 crore, from Rs 2,575.10 crore last Friday.