The benchmark Sensex on Thursday slipped below the 26,000-mark by falling over 192 points as caution prevailed on the expiry of July derivative contracts and capital outflows after US Fed once again tapered its stimulus.
Besides, a weakening rupee that depreciated 46 paise against the dollar to 60.52 intra-day also weighed on the stock market sentiment, brokers said.
Good earnings from some bluechips were outweighed by selling in power, banking, consumer durables, capital goods, auto, IT and infrastructure space, they added.
The BSE Sensex began on a weak note and continued to lose momentum to touch an intra-day low of 25,853.69. It settled at 25,894.97, down 192.45 points, or 0.74 per cent. It touched the day's high of 26,118.88. In the 30-share Sensex, 24 closed with losses, while six others ended higher.
The 50-share NSE index Nifty, after dipping to 7,711.15, finally settled the session down 70.10 points, or 0.90 per cent, at 7,721.30, its biggest fall since July 11.
The US Fed on Wednesday continued with gradual tapering and reduced asset purchases by another $10 billion/month.
"Besides squaring-up of outstanding positions on the last session of July series, fresh round of selling by foreign funds dampened the sentiments," said Rajiv Malik, a Delhi-based stock broker.
Stocks of ICICI Bank, the country's largest private sector lender, fell 1.11 per cent. It reported a 3 per cent rise in consolidated net profit at Rs 2,832 crore for the Q1.
Shares of Maruti Suzuki , the country's largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki ended 1.07 per down. It reported 20.69 per cent growth in net profit at Rs 762.28 crore for the first quarter ended June 30, 2014-15.
Sectorwise, the BSE power sector index suffered the most by plunging 1.35 per cent, followed by banking (1.18 per cent), consumer durables (0.98 per cent), capital goods (0.84 per cent), auto (0.62 per cent) and IT (0.60 per cent).
Asian stocks ending mixed on Thursday after encouraging US growth data in the second quarter was offset by profit-taking.
European markets also opened lower. Also, risk aversion was seen due on reports that Argentina has failed to strike a deal to avert its second default in more than 12 years.
Meanwhile, Foreign Portfolio Investors sold shares worth about Rs 381.66 crore on Wednesday, as per provisional data from the stock exchanges.
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