Stocks slipped further in Tuesday's afternoon session as traders pressed heavy sales on heavyweight Reliance Industries after its quarterly earnings fell below some analysts' expectations. A 2-month high on the main index also resulted in profit booking in select blue chips.
Weakness across European equities also seeped into local stocks even as marketmen ignored modest upticks in most Asian markets.
The Nifty dropped 24 points to quote at 8,389 points as it retraced from an early morning high of 8,440 points. The index is trading at its highest level since November 11th as investors bought into beaten-down blue chips in a market that fell substantially as a result of the government's demonetisation drive.
Here are the major events of a muted trading day so far:
* Petrochemicals giant Reliance Industries disappointed some investors after it reported, post market hours on Monday, that its third quarter earnings were mostly boosted by surging other income. RIL, as it is better known as, was the top loser on both the Sensex and the Nifty. The stock was also the most traded by value with 564 crore rupees worth of shares changing hands on the NSE alone. The stock dropped for a second day and fell to a 1-month low on the bourses.
* Apart from RIL, Coal India, Adani Ports, Tata Steel and Hindalco dropped 1.2-2.7%. They were among 29 stocks that fell on the Nifty.
* Hindustan Unilever, UltraTech Cement, Asian Paints, Axis Bank and Tech Mahindra gained 1-6 percent, and are among 22 gainers on the Nifty.
* The Sensex slipped 63 points to 27,225 points on the Bombay Stock Exchange.
* Infosys, Havells, post earnings, Tata Motors and United Spirits were also on the list of most active shares by value. Others on this list were LIC Housing Finance, Axis Bank, UPL and TCS.
* Suzlon. Punjab National Bank, DLF and NHPC showed heavy volume activity along with TV18 Broadcast, Motherson Sumi and Datamatics.
* Broader markets were flat as traders hesitated to take aggressive positions either way. As a consequence the Nifty 100, 200 and 500 indices lost about 0.2-0.3 percent each.
* The trend was mixed in the sectoral space with the benchmarks tracking FMCG, Software, Realty and Media industries rising 0.3-0.7 percent. Banks, in particular private sector lenders, were under pressure. The metals and pharma spaces, too, saw some mild selling.
* United Spirits, UPL, DLF, Britannia and Shree Cement were major gainers in trade.
* Selling pressure was evident on HPCL, Apollo Hospitals, LIC Housing, NHPC and Vedanta.
* The wider markets saw the bulls slipping further with 802 shares rising versus 798 that fell.
* The trend was distinctly bearish in the derivatives market where 117 futures fell compared with just 62 that rose.
* Futures of Ceat, SRF, Canara Bank and Granules India were in thick buying action.