The benchmark Sensex fell by over 40 points in early trade on Tuesday on selling by funds in select heavyweight stocks on bearish cues from the global markets.
The 30-share barometer, which gained nearly 187 points in the past two sessions, slipped 40.57 points to 9,791.82 in early trade, with metals, auto, and oil and gas sector indices falling between 0.43 and 0.83 per cent.
The wide-based Nifty of the National Stock Exchange moved down by 17.90 points to 2,963.30.
Marketmen said overnight losses in the US markets, as the Senators remained deadlocked over an auto industry bailout package, and the alleged fraud committed by New York investment manager Bernard Madoff were major factors causing negative sentiments.
They said profit-taking at improved levels by retailers also pulled back the Sensex.
Major losers on the bourses were stocks of Tata Steel, Sterlite Industries, Reliance Industries, Bharti Airtel, DLF Ltd, HDFC Bank, HDFC Ltd and ICICI Bank.
Meanwhile, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 0.75 per cent down, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index was down 0.92 per cent, while Japan's Nikkei shed 0.65 per cent in the early trade today.