After rising 125 points, the Sensex erased gains to close marginally down on Wednesday on emergence of hectic profit booking in the last hour of trade triggered by growth concerns amid poor earnings from telecom major Bharti Airtel.
The BSE benchmark index, which had gained 404 points in last two trading sessions, went up by 125 points during the day but surrendered gains with investors cashing out of realty, capital goods, banking and consumer durable sectors.
The Sensex finally settled at 17,600.56, 1.22 points lower compared to its previous close. In the 30-share index, 12 scrips fell while 18 counters ended higher.
Shares of Bharti Airtel was the worst hit as it lost 6.60% to close at Rs. 274.40 after its net profit dropped 37% for in April-June quarter.
However, the falling trend in Sensex was capped to some extent with RIL and Infosys gaining around 1% each.
The broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty managed to close 1.30 points higher at 5,338, after touching the day's high of 5,377.60.
Brokers said investors encashed recent gains on reports by foreign brokerages Citigroup and CLSA cutting the country's GDP growth this fiscal to below 6% on lesser-than-average monsoon rain and high borrowing costs.
"Indian stocks trimmed day's gains as profit-booking pursued in the last half an hour of the trade," said Nidhi Sarswat, Senior Research Analyst, Bonanza Portfolio.
A weakening trend in global stock markets on deepening Eurozone sovereign debt crisis further soured the market mood. Asian stocks rose for the third straight session but trimmed early gains amid caution ahead of key economic data due tomorrow in China.