Mumbai, Feb 28: The benchmark Sensex closed 38 points lower on Thursday, while the Nifty finished below the 10,800-mark amid monthly derivative expiry and caution ahead of the key-macro data release later in the day.
Globally, markets lost steam after a weak factory data from China and an early end of of the largely inclusive US-North Korea summit. Major Asian markets closed on a negative note and major European indices also traded in the red.
While the export-oriented IT sector stocks fell owing to strengthening rupee, the key finance and banking stocks managed to close in the green.
Deepak Jasani of HDFC Securities said that although the market closed lower, the market breadth was positive. Positivity was also seen in the broader markets as BSE Mid Cap and Small Cap gained.
The S&P BSE Sensex declined 38 points or 0.11 per cent at 35,867.44, while the Nifty slipped by 14 points or 0.13 per cent to 10,792.50.
“Market continued the range-bound movement due to F&O expiry, while mid & small cap outperformed as investors believe that India-Pakistan tensions won’t continue for long,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research, Geojit Financial Services.
Besides, Nair added that the focus is likely to shift to economic data and possibility of pre-election rally. FIIs’ inflow is picking up and rupee is gaining strength.”
Gains on the Sensex was led by ONGC and Coal India, which finished 3 to 4 per cent up, followed by Vedanta, NTPC and Yes Bank. TCS, Maruti Suzuki, Hero Moto Corp, Mahindra and Mahindra and Axis Bank closed lower.