The BSE benchmark Sensex started the new year on a weak note and turned choppy after opening higher in early trade Tuesday amid sustained capital outflows by foreign funds and surging global crude oil prices. However, strengthening rupee capped further losses in equity markets, brokers said. The 30-share index dropped over 85.77 points, or 0.24 per cent, to 35,982.56 in morning trade, after touching a high of 36,161.80 at the outset.
Similarly, the NSE Nifty declined by 19.75 points, or 0.18 per cent, to 10,842.80. The biggest losers in the Sensex pack include Coal India, L&T, HCL Tech, HeroMotocorp, HUL, Reliance Industries, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and ONGC.
Among gainers were Sun Pharma, Yes Bank, Axis Bank Bharti Airtel, TCS and Bajaj Auto.
On Monday, the BSE index fell 8.39 points, or 0.02 per cent, to finish at 36,068.33; while Nifty edged lower by 2.65 points, or 0.02 per cent, to 10,862.55.
On a net basis, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) sold shares worth Rs 326.87 crore Friday, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) were net buyers to the tune of Rs 321.98 crore, provisional data available with BSE showed.
The rupee appreciated by 15 paise to 69.62 against the US dollar in early trade Tuesday amid weakness in the greenback against some currencies overseas.
Meanwhile, the benchmark Brent crude was trading higher by 1.11 per cent at USD 53.80 per barrel.
On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average index surged 265.06 points, or 1.15 per cent, to 23,327.46 in its previous session. Asian financial markets were closed on Tuesday.