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Sensex fails to keep early lead, down 145 points on late sell-off

Stocks frittered away a good beginning Thursday as the Sensex stumbled and lost about 145 points to end at 28,840 after investors moved in to take profit towards the fag end amid a lower opening in Europe.

Both key indices the Sensex and the Nifty retreated after touching their nearly 2-year highs (March 2015) in early session. Asia saw a mixed closing and Europe a lower opening amid increased hopes of a Federal Reserve rate hike this month, which may trigger outflows from the emerging market, traders said. The US markets yesterday closed at a new high.

The BSE index ended down 144.70 points, or 0.50 per cent, at 28,839.79 after moving between 29,145.62 and 28,784.31 intra-day.

The BSE barometer had gained by 241.17 points in the previous session on the back of robust GDP data for the December quarter and positive global cues.

As many as 22 stocks in the Sensex group fell and only 8 rose. Market commenced on a strong footing largely due to a firming trend in the global markets amid growing optimism over corporate tax cuts and other policy proposals reiterated by US President Donald Trump during his speech before the Congress.

Barring auto, all sectoral indices ended lower with realty, power, PSU, healthcare, oil & gas, FMCG and bank closing down by up to 4.34 per cent.
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