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Sensex drops for 3rd day; ends 50 pts lower


Mumbai: Extending its fall to the third straight session, the benchmark Sensex closed down by over 50 points at fresh one-month low of 28,659.17 today on selling in metal, healthcare, oil & gas and capital goods stocks amid sustained fund outflows.

In volatile movements, the 30-share BSE index opened higher at 28,725.75 on the back of value-buying in select stocks. However, it soon came under pressure as participants preferred to book profits at every rise, leading to the index touching a low of 28,608.18.

While a round of late buying in select bluechip stocks, helped the Sensex to touch day’s high of 28,843.23 but it lost momentum again. It closed at 28,659.17 points – its weakest level since February 11 – down 50.70 points, or 0.18 per cent.

The gauge has lost nearly 790 points in three sessions.

The broad-based Nifty of the NSE slipped below the 8,700-mark by falling 12.10 points, or 0.14 per cent, at 8,699.95. It shuttled between 8,755.60 and 8,682.35 in intra-day trade. The gauge has lost 237.80 points in 3 days.

Hindalco was the top loser among Sensex and Nifty stocks by slumping over 5.5 per cent after its promoter Kumar Mangalam Birla was summoned as accused by a special court in coal scam case.

Pharma stocks, which have been outperforming the benchmark indices in the past few trading sessions, also came under selling pressure. Cipla and Sun Pharma fell.

Brokers said reports of selling by foreign funds after remaining net buyers for several sessions on the domestic bourses, and profit-booking by retail investors after recent gains and weakness in the rupee, dampened sentiments.

Foreign institutional investors have sold shares worth Rs 748.13 crore yesterday, as per provisional data.

Mixed trends at other Asian markets and a higher opening in Europe also influenced trading here, they added.

Telecom stocks such as Airtel, Idea and RCom remained in the limelight for the second straight day today, surging up to 6 per cent after companies were seen successfully securing most of their spectrum needs at the ongoing auction.

Sectorwise, the BSE Metal index suffered the most by falling 1.64 per cent, followed by Oil&Gas by 0.84 per cent, Healtchare by 0.82 per cent and Capital Goods by 0.54 percent.

Selling pressure in small and midcap stocks also pulled down the BSE Small-cap index by 0.32 per cent and Mid-cap index by 0.40 per cent.

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