Fag-end buying in metal stocks, along with index heavyweights like Bharti Airtel, TCS, Bajaj Finserv, Maruti Suzuki, and HCL Tech, helped the benchmark indices erase deep losses clocked earlier in the day.
However, profit-booking in the stock of Reliance Industries and private banks, ahead of the release of the Consumer inflation data, kept the indices in the negative territory.
The S&P BSE Sensex staged a recovery from sub-58,000 levels, and ended 127 points lower at 58,175, while the Nifty50 shut shop at 17,355, down 14 points.
Within the 50-share pack, 33 stocks advanced including Coal India, Hindalco, TCS and Bharti Airtel. Among the 18 losers, Reliance Industries, ICICI Bank, Adani Ports and SBI Life Insurance topped the charts.
That said, healthy buying in the broader market kept overall market breadth in the favour of the buyers. The BSE MidCap and SmallCap indices closed 0.3 per cent and 0.8 per cent higher, respectively.
According to S Ranganathan, head of research at LKP Securities, market participants are picking select stocks as valuations are pricey with several scrips trading at 3.5x price to book.
Among individual stocks, shares of Reliance Industries dragged the benchmarks down as the stock tanked 2.3% due to delay in the launch of the company's much-awaited low-cost smartphone JioPhone Next owing to global semiconductor shortages.
On the flipside, Bharti Airtel added over 1% after international rating agency S&P maintained Bharti Airtel's credit rating of "BBB-", and upgraded the outlook to stable from negative. Further, in a separate development, global brokerage CLSA has retained its buy rating on the stock and has raised the target to Rs 825 per share.
Shares of Coal India, too, gained 3.9% on the bourses today on reports that the world’s biggest miner of the fossil fuel could be raising prices. The company is likely to hike coal prices by 10-11% to account for increased costs and an impending wage revision, newswire PTI reported.
Lastly, the stock of Suryoday Small Finance Bank was locked in the 20% upper circuit band today after a Business Standard report said that Clix Capital Services is in merger talks with the lender. The bank, however, later clarified that there was no such decision taken by the board or any of its committees.
Now, going into trade on Tuesday, the markets will react to the CPI data and await wholesale inflation data. Besides, the listing of Ami Organics and Vijaya Diagnostics, along with the IPO of Sansera Engineering, will keep primary market investors on the edge.
Stock-specific triggers, global cues, and Cpvid-19 updates will also continue to determine market moves.