Sensex closes 71 points lower, still above 17,000

Sensex closes 71 points lower, still above 17,000

The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 17,056.61 points, closed at 17,059.4 points, 71.11 points or 0.42 percent down compared to its previous close at 17,130.51 points.

The 50-scrip S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange also edged lower at 5,138.3 points, down 0.44 percent.

Broader markets nudged up. The BSE midcap index was closed 0.16 percent down and the BSE smallcap index ended 0.19 percent lower.

The market breadth at the BSE was mixed with 1,336 stocks moving up, compared to 1,481 on the decline and 113 remaining unchanged.

According to data available with the Securities and Exchange Board of India, foreign institutional investors bought stocks worth $55.07 million Thursday.

Among main gainers on the Sensex were: HDFC, up 2.34 percent at Rs.681.95; NTPC, up 1.51 percent at Rs.177.90; Coal India, up 1.17 percent at Rs.386.25 and Hindalco, up 1.06 percent at Rs.157.20.

Main losers included: Tata Power, down 4.31 percent at Rs.1,123.40; Maruti Suzuki, down 2.52 percent at Rs.1,247.45; Jindal Steel, down 2.43 percent at Rs.511.55 and Bharti Airtel, down 2.42 percent at Rs.397.10.

Other major Asian markets too edged lower after rising in the previous session. Traders looked to book profits.

The benchmark Japanese Nikkei closed 0.63 percent lower at 8,981.94 points, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 0.95 percent to end at 19,595.14 points.

However, the Chinese Shanghai Composite index ended 1.27 percent up at 2,581.51 points.

European markets too were trading with moderate gains as traders looked for bargains among stocks that fell in the recent sell-off.

The FTSE 100 of UK was ruling 0.64 percent higher at 5,039.37 points, while the German DAX was up 0.52 percent at 5,642.38 points.

The French CAC 40 was down 0.45 percent at 2,989.33 points.

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