Indian equity benchmarks ended a choppy session on Wednesday on a weak note dragged by Reliance Industries, ICICI Bank, HDFC, Tata Consultancy Services and Kotak Mahindra Bank. For most part of the day, the benchmark traded in a range bound fashion, with the Sensex touching a high of 52,912.35 and a low of 52,264.12 and the Nifty 50 index trading in a band of 136 points. However, late selling pressure in IT, metal and banking stocks led to a sharp fall in the last hour of trading.
The Sensex ended 283 points lower at 52,306 and the Nifty 50 index fell 86 points to 15,687.
A drop in COVID-19 cases, easing of pandemic-induced restrictions in several states and a recent record increase in daily vaccinations have helped propel both the indices to this month’s high.
Selling pressure was widespread as nine of the 11 sector gauges compiled by the National Stock Exchange ended lower led by the Nifty Metal index, falling over 1 per cent. Nifty Information Technology, Bank, Financial Services, Pharma, Private Bank and Realty indices also closed in the red.
On the other hand, Nifty Auto and PSU Banking Index managed to close with gains.
Among individual stocks, Hero MotoCorp rose 3 per cent to hit a high of Rs 2,994.55 on the BSE after the company said it would increase the prices of its motorcycles and scooters from July. The company will increase the ex-showroom prices of its motorcycles and scooters with effect from July 1, 2021.
Adani Ports was the top Nifty topper, with the stock falling 3.3 per cent to close at Rs 718. Wipro, Shree Cements, JSW Steel, Divis Labs, Larsen & Toubro, Tata Consultancy Services, HDFC, NTPC, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Axis Bank and Tata Steel were also among the losers.
On the flipside, Maruti Suzuki was the top Nifty gainer, with the stock up 2.3 per cent to close at Rs 7,432. Titan, Bajaj Finserv, Mahindra & Mahindra, ONGC, Hero MotoCorp, Hindalco, Eicher Motors, Cipla, Tata Consumer Products and Britannia Industries were among the gainers.
Overall market breadth was negative as 1,700 shares closed lower while 1,536 shares closed higher on the BSE.