Equities snapped its impressive seven-day upsurge as profit-taking emerged in select frontline blue-chips with the benchmark Nifty plunging by a hefty 62 points on the National Stock Exchange (NSE).
Extreme caution crept back into spotlight after recent blow-out move ahead of the next weeks’ two major events - F&O expiry and the Narendra Modi government’s much-anticipated Union Budget.
After a weak start to trade, the key indices intensified its downside as trading got progressed and kept market under intense selling pressure throughout the session.
Elsewhere in Asia, equities ended mostly higher with Japanese stocks rallying to multi-year highs for the second straight session boosted by a weaker currency as well as improving euro zone business activity.
The broader 50-share Nifty fell back by a whopping 61.70 points, or 0.69 per cent to finish at 8,833.60 after plunging to a fresh intra-day low of 8,816.30 during the trade.
Among the sectoral indices, CNX Energy fell the most led by key frontline stocks followed by Technology, Financials, Infra and Metal.
Bucking the trend FMCG, Auto, Realty and Healthcare witnessed a smart rebound. The mid-cap and small-cap indices also outperformed the benchmark indices.
Petrochem giant Reliance Industries topped the sellers list with the stock sliding as much as 3.21 per cent on news that an employee of the company has been detained in the corporate espionage case.
Other major laggards included ICICI Bank, Infosys, HDFC, L&T, HDFC Bank, HCL-Tech, Bharti Airtel, Wipro, Maruti, Axis Bank, HUL, ONGC, Ultracemco, Tata Power, Asian Paints, Kotak Bank, Cipla, TCS, TechM, Sun Pharma and Power Grid Corp.
Among the gainers, state-owned BHEL was up by 5.14 per cent. ITC, Indusind Bank, Tata Motors, ZEE, Bank of Baroda, Dr Reddy’s and PNB also gained substantially.
Turnover in the cash segment tanked to Rs 18,301.86 crore against Rs 20,615.82 crore yesterday. A total of 10,716.93 lakh shares changed hands in 78,02,724 trades. The market capitalisation at NSE stood at Rs 101,93,850 crore.