Metal, IT and FMCG counters bore the brunt of selling on Wednesday as the benchmark Sensex ended 138 points lower despite good institutional buying amid narrowly mixed global trends.
Doubts on government formation continued to daunt market sentiment as wary operators and retail investors booked profits at higher levels after the recent bull run, a broker said.
The Bombay Stock Exchange 30-share barometer touched a low of 11,934.44 in early afternoon trade but recovered to a high of 12,256.43 before ending the day at 12,019.65, revealing a fall of 138.38 points or 1.14 per cent from its previous close.
The metal index suffered the most, losing 2.07 per cent to 7,812.99, as Sensex-heavy Tata Steel, Sterlite Industries, SAIL and Ispat Industries lost heavily.
The IT sector was the second-worst performer and lost 1.56 per cent to 2,792.64 with Infosys Technologies, Wipro, Tata Consultancy Services and HCL Techno falling sharply.
On Tuesday, the Sensex registered its second-biggest gain of 475 points in absolute terms in 2009.
The 50-issue Nifty of the National Stock Exchange moved erratically before concluding at 3,635.25, a decline of 45.85 points or 1.25 per cent from the last close.