After surging to over one-month highs, the Sensex ended Monday with a loss of 46 points and Nifty inched 17 points down in their first drop in seven sessions on profit-selling in bluechips like HDFC, Infosys and Airtel amid weak global cues.
The day began on a positive note with both the benchmark indices crossing key resistance levels. The BSE Sensex hit 28,064.49 and the NSE Nifty strengthened to 8,445.60.
However, profit-booking quickly kicked in amid weak Asian closing and sluggish European trades. IT, Telecom, Metal and Banking shares saw selling while Auto, Consumer Durables and Capital Goods stocks attracted buying interest.
Tech shares like Infosys fell ahead of earnings. Fall in HDFC, TCS, RIL, HDFC Bank, Bharti Airtel, Dr Reddy's Lab, SBI, Hindalco and Sesa Sterlite shares mainly put pressure on the market, traders said.
The BSE 30-share indicator resumed higher and crossed 28K-mark to a high of 28,064.49, up by more-than 175 points.
But emergence of profit-booking pulled it down at the fag end to a low of 27,786.85, before ending at 27,842.32 -- logging a net loss of 45.58 points or 0.16%.
In previous six days, the bluechip index had flared up by 679.29 points, or 2.50%.
Similarly, the 50-issue CNX Nifty of the NSE also fell back by 17.05 points, or 0.20%, to close at 8,378.40.
"Equity benchmarks made a positive start on Monday, but as the day progressed, profit taking in IT & banking majors led flat closing in the end. But, negative cues from global front pushed participants on the back foot," said Religare Securities president (retail distribution) Jayant Manglik.
Global cues were weak due to volatility in Euro. "Euro fell to its lowest level recorded in almost last 9 years against dollar as markets speculated that ECB will expand its monetary easing program to spur inflation in Euro region," said Bonanza Portfolio Associate Fund Manager Hiren Dhakan.
Asian stocks ended lower Monday following a weak lead from Wall Street. Key indices like Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan fell by 0.24% to 1.26% while the Shanghai Composite rose by a whopping 3.58%.
European markets were trading narrowly mixed as indices in France and Germany moved up by 0.03% to 0.04%, while the UK's FTSE was quoting down 0.50%.
Back home, 15 scrips out of the 30-share Sensex pack ended higher while 14 counters finished lower. NTPC ruled steady.
Major Sensex losers include Dr Reddy's Lab (2.19%), Bharti Airtel (2.10%), Hindalco (1.87%), HDFC (1.29%), TCS (1.28%), Sesa Sterlite (1.01%), Reliance Industries (0.96%) and HDFC Bank (0.86%).
However, Maruti rose by 2.62%, followed by Tata Motors 2.42%, Tata Steel 1.42%, Larsen & Toubro 1.42% and ONGC 1.15%, among others.
Among the S&P BSE sectoral indices, Teck fell by 1.07%, followed by IT 1.01% and metal 0.45%, while auto rose by 1.14% and consumer durables 1.11%.
Total market breadth continued to remain positive as 1,545 stocks ended with gains while 1,420 finished with losses and 124 ruled steady. Total turnover fell to Rs 2,729.17 crore from Rs 2,992.80 crore on last Friday.
Foreign Portfolio Investors bought shares worth a net Rs 259.82 crore last Friday as per provisional data.