Sensex loses 150 points on negative global cues; IT leads fall

Sensex loses 150 points on negative global cues; IT leads fall

Amid a weakening trend in Asia and a lower opening on European bourses, the Bombay Stock Exchange's 30-share index -- which lost 67 points in the previous session -- fell by another 149.80 points to 18,070.19 after the US Federal Reserve said US economic growth will be "more modest" than anticipated, with software exporters the worst hit.

The broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty also fell by 40.10 points to 5,4520.60, after trading between a low of 5,412.00 and high of 5,474.60.

Indian software companies earn more than 50 per cent of their revenue from the US and Europe. Software services provider, Infosys Technologies, the second-most valuable scrip on the Sensex, lost Rs 21.85 to Rs 2,810.80, while Wipro fell by Rs 9.75 to Rs 418.15 and Tata Consultancy Services by Rs 5.70 to Rs 858.85.

After a better start, early gains on the Sensex were eroded after reports of a weakening trend in the Asian region and a lower opening in Europe. The Japan's Nikkei lost 2.70 per cent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng 0.83 per cent, while London's FTSE opened 1.68 per cent lower.

Selling pressure further gathered momentum after leading mobile phone services provider Bharti Airtel plunged by 1.42 per cent to Rs 319.70 following the announcement of a 32 per cent slump in net income for the first quarter as price cuts reduced margins.
Trading was more of a stock-specific nature, with the result that 24 stocks in the 30-BSE index components fell, while six ended with gains.

However, the downtrend was cushioned by Tata Motors, which rose by Rs 49.35 to Rs 1,006.65, extending gains for the sixth consecutive day. The stock yesterday rose to the highest level in at least 19 years after the company posted a first quarter profit after recording a loss in the corresponding period a year ago.

Realty and banking stocks, which were the fancy of investors in the recent past, were the major losers today on emergence of profit-booking. The realty sector index suffered the most, losing 1.81 per cent to 3,555.85, followed by the banking index, which shed 0.95 per cent to 11,829.08.

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