Sensex slips below 20,000 points in choppy session


Mumbai : A benchmark index of Indian equities market slipped below 20,000 points mark in a volume session Thursday as investors stayed on the sidelines ahead of the holiday season.

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The 30-share sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 20,038.83 points, settled 0.16 percent or 32.92 points down at 19,982.88 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 20,076.08 points and low of 19,939.30 points in the intra-day.

At the National Stock Exchange (NSE), the 50-share S&P CNX Nifty closed 0.07 percent or 4.40 points down at 5,980 points.

The broader market also ended in the red with the BSE midcap index losing 0.23 percent and the BSE smallcap index closing 0.13 percent down.

The BSE realty and metal indices slumped nearly one percent.

Major losers at the Sensex were Hindalco Inds, down 1.81 percent to Rs.233.70; Tata Steel, down 1.61 percent to Rs.661.55; DLF, down 1.26 percent to Rs.281.45; and Tata Motors, down 1.23 percent at Rs.1,348.80.

Only 10 out of the 30 scrips that constitute Sensex closed in the positive. NTPC, up 1.50 percent at Rs.195.75; Sterlite Inds, up 0.95 percent at Rs.180.15; Infosys, up 0.77 percent at Rs.3,362.50; and HDFC Bank, up 0.41 percent at Rs.2,188.40 were among the major gainers at the Sensex.

In the broader market, 1,523 shares declined, while 1,367 advanced in low volume of 277 million shares.

Other Asian markets also closed in the red. The Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.79 percent to 2,855.22 points, and the Hong Kong’s Hang Seng declined 0.62 percent to 22,903 points.

The Japanese Nikkei settled 0.23 percent down at 10,346.50 points.

European markets were mixed. Around mid-day, Britain’s FTSE 100 was ruling 0.15 percent higher at 5,992 points, and the German DAX was 0.07 percent up at 7,073.03, while the French CAC 40 was down 0.45 percent.