A late recovery in auto and bank shares on Monday helped the Bombay Stock Exchange 30-share index rebound from early lows, but still ended down 209 points as market continued to confuse investors with its unpredictable movements.
Bank stocks came of initial lower levels on reports that a surprised rate cut by the US Federal Reserve last week has increased possibility of a repo rate cut by the Reserve Bank of India in its quarterly review of monetary policy to be released tomorrow.
The late bounce aided the BSE barometer recover by more than 700 points from its intra-day low of 17,443.29.
The Sensex ended the day at 18,152.78, a fall of 208.88 points, or 1.14 per cent, from Friday's close of 18,361.66.
A smart rise in REL, Maruti Suzuki, HDFC, Bajaj Auto, Mah&Mah, and ICICI Bank also mitigated the Sensex's losses.
The broader S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange also closed 109.25 points, or 2.03 per cent, lower at 5,274.10 from previous close of 5,383.35.
Technical analysts termed the fall as expected after the Sensex hit the major target at 18,270 in a more than 1,000 points upswing on Friday.
Attributing initial weakness to a sharp slide in global markets, brokers said positive FII activity after their long absence helped inject some confidence among local investors.
Asian indices ended sharply lower by about 3.0 to 7.0 per cent, also extending their losses for another day today.
The rollover to February series was hit hard as operators preferred to lighten commitments rather than square off ahead of the expiry of derivatives current contract on Thursday.
Investors mood remained cautious as global markets are still under pressure with anticipation of continued volatility before the meeting of Federal Reserve and US monthly jobs report on February 1.
The trading volume was extremely low at Rs 3,923.76 crore compared to Rs 6,379.33 crore on Friday. RNRL continued to be the most active scrip with highest turnover of Rs 239.44 crore followed by Reliance Capital (Rs 179.29 crore), REL (Rs 164.57 crore), Essar Oil (Rs 164.43 crore) and RPL (Rs 150.44 crore).
The market breadth turned extremely negative with 1,852 losers against 863 gainers.
The broad-based BSE-100 index dropped by 96.34 points to 9,745.29 from previous close of 9,841.63.
The BSE-200 index and the Dollex-200 were quoted lower at 2,304.80 and 973.18 at close compared to last close of 2,326.30 and 983.33 respectively. The BSE-500 Index declined by 65.85 points to 7,386.64 from 7,452.49 and the Dollex-30 ended down at 3,779.71 from 3,827.38.
RIL dipped by 45.55 to 2564.00, Infosys Tech by 74.50 to 144.50, TCS by 27.35 to 854.20, Wipro by 22.95 to 406.25, Satyam Computer by 7.80 to 398.50, DLF by 52.60 to 892.50, BHEL by 72.70 to 2092.30, L&T by 45.90 to 3844.50, NTPC by 9.4 to 212.85, ONGC by 14.65 to 1000.80, Bharti Airtel by 44.90 to 89.70, Reliance Com by 22.15 to 46.25, Grasim by 85.90 to 2947.55, HDFC Bank by 16.40 to 1585.00, SBI by 97.30 to 2307.70, Ranbaxy by 17.55 to 350.40, Tata Steel by 15.70 to 98.40, ACL by 2.05 to 115.05 and ITC by 1.85 to 196.35.
However, Bajaj Auto rose by 195.20 to 2459.35, Maruti by 32.95 to 862.60, M&M by 12.05 to 86.25, Tata Motors by 2.35 to 714.70, ICICI Bank by 14.45 to 1273.70, HDFC by 68.40 to 2781.75, REL by 67.45 to 2097.70 and ACC by 10.95 to 798.65.