The Sensex ended (provisional) at 16821 - down 25 points. Nifty ended down 11 points at 5,039.
(Updated at 1439 hrs)
Markets continued lacklustre trades as metal and realty shares exerted pressure. The Sensex, after showing some volatility in a narrow range, is now down 62 points at 16,785. Nifty is down 14 points at 5,036.
Asian markets were mixed on hopes that the Euro Zone crisis wopuld come to an end. SMC Global, in its research report said that the rise came as Italy took steps to resolve its debt problems before European Union leaders meet this week to tackle the region’s crisis. Nikkei and Hang Seng gained 0.6% each. However. Shanghai Composite slipped 1% to 2,333.
BSE metal index dropped 0.8% to 10,820. Realty and FMCG indices were down around 0.5% each.
Telecom major Bharti Airtel has paid a first-ever interim dividend of Rs 11.75 crore to its minority partner in Bharti Hexacom, state-owned TCIL, at the rate of 15% for FY12. The stock was tading flat at Rs 389.
Sun Pharma from the pharma pack was down 1.7%, followed by Tata Steel and Sterlite. ITC was the biggest dragger, however, and along with Reliance contributed to a 23 points fall in the index.
Meanwhile, Bhel gained 2% at Rs 288. Jaiprakash Associates, NTPC and Maruti Suzuki added 1-2% each.
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee today told opposition leaders that the decision on allowing FDI in retail was being put on hold and a final decision will be taken only after consulting all opposition parties. Retail stocks were down in red. Pantaloons Retail slumped 12% to Rs 188. MW Unitexx, V2 Retail and Provogues slipped 4-9% each.
Buoyed by strong performance, two-wheeler manufacturers India Yamaha and Bajaj Auto aim to post decent sales this financial year. This comes at a time when the auto industry is generally exhibiting a slump.
Among other stocks, Bank of India surged 1.6% post the news that the bank has agreed to enter into a joint venture with AXA Investment Managers in the asset management business in India.