Benchmarks settle modestly lower in volatile trade amid mixed global cues

Mumbai: The Sensex and Nifty closed modestly lower on Tuesday after investors offloaded FMCG, IT and banking stocks in the last hour of trade amid mixed global cues.

After rising over 320 points in intra-day trade, the 30-share BSE Sensex pared all gains to settle 48.99 points or 0.08 per cent lower at 59,196.99.

On similar lines, the broader NSE Nifty slipped 10.20 points or 0.06 per cent to 17,655.60.

Bajaj Finserv was the top laggard in the Sensex pack, dropping 2.08 per cent, followed by Kotak Mahindra Bank, HUL, M&M, Bajaj Finance, Nestle India and Asian Paints.

On the other hand, Bharti Airtel, NTPC, Tata Steel, Reliance Industries, Power Grid, Dr Reddy's and Sun Pharma were among the major gainers, spurting as much as 2.79 per cent.

The market breadth was negative, with 20 of the 30 Sensex components closing in the red.

"Domestic indices wiped out early gains to close flat, tracking mixed global cues. While the energy crisis and ECB interest rate decision later in the week pressurised European markets, Chinese policymakers' renewed efforts to strengthen its economy boded well for the Chinese bourses.

"In an effort to stabilize declining oil prices, OPEC+ opted to cut back on the output given the faltering global growth outlook," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

Ajit Mishra, VP - Research, Religare Broking Ltd, said markets settled almost unchanged in a volatile trading session in the absence of any major trigger.

"Markets are still in a range and rotational buying across sectors is helping the index to hold strong amid mixed global cues. Since all the sectors, barring IT, are contributing to the move, the focus should be more on stock selection," he added.

In the broader market, the BSE midcap gauge climbed 0.47 per cent and the smallcap index advanced 0.10 per cent.

Among the BSE sectoral indices, power jumped 1.90 per cent, utilities 1.74 per cent, oil & gas 1.35 per cent, energy 1.08 per cent and metal 0.87 per cent.

FMCG, bank, IT, consumer discretionary goods & services and finance were the laggards.

Elsewhere in Asia, markets in Seoul, Tokyo and Shanghai ended in the green, while Hong Kong settled lower.

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