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Sensex drops over 150 pts; Nifty slips below 12,100

Mumbai: Market benchmark Sensex dropped over 150 points in opening session on Thursday dragged by losses in Reliance Industries, HDFC Bank and Infosys ahead of January derivatives' expiry.

After opening 181 points higher, the 30-share BSE index turned volatile and surrendered all gains to trade 168.61 points or 0.41 per cent lower at 41,030.05.

Similarly, the broader NSE was trading 41.65 points, or 0.34 per cent, down at 12,087.85.

In the previous session, Sensex settled 231.80 points, or 0.57 per cent, higher at 41,198.66, and Nifty closed 73.70 points, or 0.61 per cent, up at 12,129.50.

Meanwhile, on a net basis, foreign institutional investors sold equities worth Rs 1,014.27 crore, while domestic institutional investors purchased shares worth Rs 1,520.90 crore on Wednesday, data available with stock exchanges showed.

Tata Steel was the top loser in the Sensex pack, shedding up to 2 per cent, followed by IndusInd Bank, Reliance Industries, Nestle India, Bharti Airtel, SBI, Kotak Bank and Infosys.

On the other hand, PowerGrid, NTPC, Hero MotoCorp, TCS and HCL Tech were trading on a positive note.

According to traders, benchmark indices turned highly volatile ahead of the expiry of January futures and options (F&O) contracts.

Further, weakness in other Asian bourses amid concerns over the impact of China's coronavirus on world economy also weighed on domestic market, traders said.

Bourses in Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea were trading with sharp losses, while markets in China remained closed.

Benchmarks on Wall Street ended on a tepid note on Wednesday.

Brent crude oil futures fell 1.09 per cent to USD 58.27 per barrel.

The rupee depreciated 17 paise to 71.45 against the US dollar in morning session.

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