Domestic benchmarks Sensex and Nifty closed on a negative note during Wednesday's volatile session amid weakness in their Asian counterparts. Sensex closed 97 points at 33,507 and Nifty declined 32 points lower to 9,881.
Investors were pessimistic after India said that 20 of its army personnel had been martyred in clashes with Chinese troops at Galwan valley in Ladakh.
Besides border tensions between Indian and Chinese army, weakness in Asian counterparts, spike in coronavirus cases and sustained foreign fund outflows also kept domestic investors cautious.
PowerGrid, NTPC, SBI, UltraTech Cement, M&M, HDFC Bank and Kotak Bank were among the top losers on Sensex. Maruti, Tech Mahindra, Axis Bank and Infosys were among top gainers.
Ajit Mishra, VP - Research, Religare Broking said,"Amid all, the broader markets outperformed wherein both midcap and smallcap ended with healthy gains of 0.3% and 0.7%. Among the sectors, a mixed trend was exhibited as banking, capital goods, metals ended with losses whereas other sectors like telecom, auto and IT ended with decent gains."
Earlier, the market reversed trend amid a recovery in Asian counterparts and traded in the green, led by strong buying in banking and financial stocks. However, indices gave up afternoon gains and closed a tad lower.
Expressing views on market trend today, Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services said, "After another day of indecisive trades, brought by the threat of escalation in a border dispute with China, Indian benchmark indices ended slightly negative. FIIs have also been net sellers in equity this week which have impacted the markets."
Asian markets traded mixed with investors weighing economic recovery against the resurgence of coronavirus cases in Asia and the US.
Wall Street closed with strong gains balanced by positive economic data reported in the US. Investors also turned optimistic after Federal Reserve Chairman said that more stimulus would be needed to pull back the American economy.
Meanwhile, companies set to announce their earnings are Pidilite Industries, Muthoot Finance, Indraprastha Gas, HEG, Cummins, Gulf Oil Lubricants India, Fortis Healthcare, JK Cement among others.
On the currency front, Rupee, the local currency, ended at 76.15 per US dollar against the last closing of 76.21 per dollar.
Commenting on the local unit, Anuj Gupta DVP Commodities and Currencies Research, Angel Broking said," Geopolitical tension between Indian & China is a major cause of depreciation of USDINR. Although uncertainty in the global financial market and increase cases of Covid-19 are also negative for the currency. We expect USDINR may depreciate further and it is expected that USDINR may test 76.60 - 76.80 levels soon."
Experts said, global markets were affected by the rising concerns on new coronavirus cases and the resurgence of the virus in various nations. Worldwide, the total number of Covid-19 cases has crossed 81.62 lakh, with the death toll topping 4.41 lakh.
India witnessed the highest single-day spike of 2,003 coronavirus fatalities, pushing the death toll to 11,903, while total cases rose to 3.54 lakh with 10,974 new infections.