The Indian equity market ended flat in a highly choppy session today. Sensex closed 37.78 points or 0.07 per cent lower at 54,288.61. During the day, the 30-stock index hit a high of 54,931.30 and a low of 54,191.55.
The broader NSE Nifty declined 51.45 points or 0.32 per cent to close at 16,214.70.
Tata Steel was the top Sensex loser, slipping 12.53 per cent, followed by UltraTech Cement, ITC, Power Grid, HDFC, HDFC Bank, HCL Technologies, and Reliance Industries.
M&M, Maruti, Hindustan Unilever, Larsen & Toubro, Asian Paints, and Kotak Mahindra Bank were among the top sectoral gainers, rising up to 4.14 per cent.
"Nifty once again gave up the intra-day gains and ended in the negative. Metals stocks sold off post the levy of export duties over the weekend on iron ore and some steel intermediates," said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research, HDFC Securities.
Metal stocks were the top sectoral losers today after the government raised export duty on steel products. On May 21, duty on iron ore was raised by up to 50 percent and some steel intermediaries to 15 percent to facilitate domestic availability.
Foreign institutional investors offloaded shares worth Rs 1,265.41 crore on Friday, as per stock exchange data.
Gaurav Ratnaparkhi, Head of Technical Research, Sharekhan by BNP Paribas said, "The Nifty opened on a positive note & attempted to scale higher on May 23. It went on to test the crucial level of 16400 where the index had faced resistance in the last two weeks. 16400 proved to be a strong barrier yet another time. The hourly chart shows that the upper end of an upward sloping channel also created pressure near 16400. Thus, the index nose-dived towards the end of the session & closed in the red for the day. The overall structure shows that the Nifty is likely to witness sideways action in the short term. 16,000-16,400 is expected to be the range for the next few sessions.
On Friday, the 30-stock Sensex ended 1,534.16 points higher at 54,326.39. Nifty zoomed 456.75 points to 16,266.15.
All Sensex stocks ended in the green. Dr. Reddy's Labs, Reliance Industries, Tata Steel, Nestle, Larsen & Toubro, Axis Bank, IndusInd Bank, Sun Pharma, State Bank of India, and HDFC were the top Sensex gainers, rising up to 8.10 per cent.
Meanwhile, the rupee recovered from record lows and closed 15 paise higher at 77.55 against the US dollar on Monday, supported by a weak greenback overseas.
On Friday, the rupee ended at a record low of 77.70 against the American currency.
Meanwhile, Asian markets in Shanghai, Seoul, and Tokyo ended higher, while Hong Kong settled lower. Equity exchanges in Europe were trading mostly higher in the afternoon session. Stock markets in the US had ended on a mixed note on Friday.
International oil benchmark Brent crude gained 1.15 per cent to $113.8 per barrel.
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