Sensex ends below crucial 20k level, fall for third day

Sensex ends below crucial 20k level, fall for third day

Sensex ends below crucial 20k level, fall for third day

The Sensex, which had lost nearly 298 points in last two trading sessions, fell further by 64.33 points to 19,941.04 as investors squared up their positions on expiry of current month contract in the derivatives segment.

The index shuttled between a high of 20,185.46 and a low of 19,869.32 points during the session. The broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty also broke its crucial 6,000 points level by losing 24.95 points at 5,987.70. It touched a high of 6,071.10 and a low of 5,968.10.

A spree of profit-booking further pulled down the benchmark, even as a firming global trend and easing inflation failed to check the down-trend. Barring auto, all the sectoral indices closed in red. In 30-BSE index components, 22 stocks closed with losses while eight remained higher.

Brokers said the market was in over-bought position as funds and investors were expecting the benchmark might regain its lost peak after 33-months. They said the front-runner stocks led by Reliance Industries, Infosys Technologies and and ICICI Bank were major losers as speculators unwinded their pending positions.

The foreign funds have been net buyers of stocks for 40 trading days, matching the longest run of inflows in the more than five years since Aug. 9, 2005, they added. The heavy-weight Reliance Industries dropped by Rs 9.60 to Rs 1,083.05; second-heaviest Infosys Technologies by Rs 9.60 to Rs 2,974.65; leading private lender ICICI Bank by Rs 15.95 to Rs 1,090.30 and state-run State Bank of India by rs 15.90 to Rs 3,177.55. All the four carry nearly 32 per cent weightage on the Sensex.

The realty sector index suffered the most by losing 1.72 per cent to 3,677.84 followed by consumer durable index by 1.51 per cent to 6,517.33. The power, metal, healthcare and FMCG sector were also in red.

As the selling pressure spread over a wide-front, the midcap sector index lost 0.64 per cent to 8,375.75 and smallcap index by 0.53 per cent to 10,758.55.