Sensex washes out early gains, slides 49 pts in see-saw trade

sensexMumbai: The benchmark BSE Sensex failed to maintain the early momentum and gave up its gains towards the mid-way to close lower by 49 points to 28,003.12, led by sell-off in ICICI Bank and L&T amid mixed trend overseas.

Though the first half was upbeat, driven by optimistic buying by investors and sustained foreign fund inflows amid rising hopes of GST law passage as early as this week.

Meanwhile, a monthly PMI survey showed that manufacturing sector continued with its uptrend and hit a four-month high in July, backed by stronger upturn in new business orders.

The Nikkei Markit India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) – a composite indicator of manufacturing performance – rose to 51.8 in July from 51.7 in June.

But sentiments turned somewhat weak towards the middle of the session as profit-booking emerged as investors turned cautious on disappointing quarterly earnings by some bluechip companies and initial gains were completely wiped-off.

Shreyash Devalkar, Fund Manager Equities, BNP Paribas Mutual Fund, said, “It was an indecisive day on the bourses as key benchmark indices started the day on a positive note, but succumbed to selling pressure in mid-afternoon trade, only to pare losses and finally close the day near the flat line.”

“Investors are keenly following the progress on the Goods and Services Tax (GST) constitutional amendment bill in Parliament, and chose to shrug off marginally improved Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) numbers,” he added.

Shares of private sector lender ICICI Bank suffered the most by plunging 5.19 per cent to Rs 249.20 after the company on Friday reported a 22.1 per cent decline in consolidated net profit at Rs 2,516 crore for the quarter ended June 30 as bad loans mounted.

Shares of engineering major, Larsen & Toubro tumbled 4.12 per cent to Rs 1,493.80 despite reporting a 46 per cent jump in consolidated net profit at Rs 610 crore for the quarter ended June 30, 2016.

Other laggards included Adani Ports, Lupin, SBI, Reliance Industries, Cipla, GAIL, Coal India, ONGC, ITC Ltd and HDFC Bank, falling by up to 1.68 per cent.