The benchmark BSE Sensex fell by over 400 points in afternoon trade Wednesday due to profit-booking by investors after recent gains.
The 30-share barometer plunged by 400.83 points or 1.55 per cent to 25,463.64. The index had risen 253.94 points in the last two days.
Also, the NSE Nifty was trading lower by 109.25 points or 1.39 per cent at 7,728.30.
The fall in Sensex was triggered by Hindalco, which weakened the most by 4.33 per cent, followed by Infosys 3.58 per cent, Tata Steel 2.96 per cent, Sesa Goa 2.44 per cent and SBI 2.22 per cent.
The IT sub-index on the Bombay Stock Exchange fell 2.3 per cent as against a 1.5 per cent drop in the Sensex. Banking and metal stocks also underperformed the Sensex, adding to bearish momentum.
Metal stocks were under pressure amid a crash in global commodity prices. Hindalco plunged 5.3 per cent to be the biggest Nifty loser while Tata Steel and Vedanta fell over 3 per cent. Among banking stocks, Axis Bank, ICICI Bank, SBI, PNB and Bank of Baroda fell 2.5-3 per cent.
Shares of SpiceJet soared nearly 10 per cent after earlier falling sharply on Competition Commission’s penalty for cartelization in fixing fuel surcharge for transporting cargo.
Global cues remained uncertain, further weighing on sentiments. Traders said markets will find a near term bottom only when foreign investors stop aggressive selling in domestic equities.
Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) have been net sellers of over Rs. 5,000 crore worth equities so far this month. The support has come from domestic institutional investors, who have bought equities worth Rs. 3,823 crore in November.
Brokers said that apart from profit-booking in recent gainers and lower openings in European markets, absence of any positive cues mainly dragged the indices down.