Erasing most of the early gains, the Bombay Stock Exchange benchmark Sensex closed with a moderate gain of 22 points as funds continued to book profits for the second day today amid private lenders raising lending rates.
The 30-share index settled higher by 22.79 points at 16,994.49 points, a tad lower than the psychological 17,000-level.
The wide-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty raised by 8.45 points to 5,088.70 points.
Marketmen said funds started booking profits as the markets had rallied over 750 points in straight three days since the Budget. A hike in interest rate for home and auto loans by private sector lenders, including HDFC and ICICI Bank, too influenced the trading sentiment.
In the 30 index-linked counters, 16 ended with gains, 13 closed lower while Mahindra and Mahindra remained unchanged. In sectoral indices, barring PSU and consumer durables, all other indices closed with gains.
The auto sector index was unchanged as reports of rise in vehicle sales by leading automobile companies reduced the impact of private bankers decision to hike interest rate on auto loans.
The realty sector index was the best performer as most of the badly hit stocks attracted fresh buying on expectations of fast recovery in the economic growth.