In a volatile trade, the Sensex on Tuesday fell over 50 points to close at 27,440.14 as investors turned cautious and booked profits in banking, IT and auto sector stocks.
Selling was seen mainly in key stocks like HDFC, HDFC Bank, Infosys, ITC, SBI, M&M, Cipla, among others.
Besides, a smart rise in ONGC, TCS, Vedanta, HUL, Tata Steel, Sun Pharma, L&T, Hindalco and Tata Motors, capped the fall in the benchmark.
Second-line stocks outperformed the Sensex on good buying by retail investors as their indices -- BSE Midcap and BSE Smallcap -- rose by 0.60% and 0.08%, respectively.
Worries over the remaining fourth quarter results amid a downward bias in Asian markets too weighed negatively on the market sentiment.
The BSE 30-share barometer resumed better and touched a high of 27,603.71 before tumbling back to an intra-day low of 27,338.23, down by over 150 points.
Later, it recovered on firm European opening to settle at 27,440.14, still showing a fall of 50.45 points, or 0.18%. On Monday, the Sensex had spurted by 479.28 points, or 1.77%.
Similarly, the 50-issue CNX Nifty of the NSE also gyrated in a range of 8,355.65 and 8,280.60 before concluding slightly lower by 7.15 points, or 0.09%, at 8,324.80.
However, metal stocks were in the limelight on good demand from China and its index was the top gainer among the sectoral indices, rising by 2.86%.
Meanwhile, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares worth Rs 60.53 crore yesterday, as per provisional data available with stock exchanges.