Mumbai: Stock markets today fell for the second straight session with the Sensex slipping over 76 points to 25,589.01 and the Nifty declining nearly 23 points to 7,649.25 on losses in domestic IT shares after global peer Cognizant cut its full-year sales growth forecast.
With over 1.5 per cent fall each, heavyweights Infosys and TCS lead the losses in both benchmark indices. Weak global cues also persisted as Asian markets mostly dipped as concerns over the European economy and international conflicts, including in Ukraine, grew, said brokers.
The BSE 30-share barometer resumed stable and later moved erratically in a range of 25,778.05 and 25,526.05 before settling at 25,589.01, a fall of 76.26 points or 0.30 per cent. Yesterday, it has plunged 242.74 points or 0.94 percent.
Similarly, the 50-issue CNX Nifty of the NSE also gyrated in a range of 7,708.95 and 7,630.40 before concluding down by 22.80 points or 0.30 per cent at 7,649.25. It had slipped by 74.50 points or 0.96 per cent in the previous session.
US-headquartered Cognizant, which has a large employee force in India, yesterday lowered its 2014 year revenue guidance to at least 14 per cent from 16.5 per cent earlier.
This sparked off worries IT sector may face challenges ahead. Infosys and TCS were the top losers from the Sensex with fall of 1.68 per cent and 1.56 per cent respectively. The sectoral BSE-IT and BSE-Teck indices were the biggest lowers, dropping by 1.27 per cent and 1.14 per cent respectively.
Banking, realty, power, capital goods, healthcare, metal and FMCG sector stocks also came under selling pressure.
Bucking the overall weak trend, shares of companies related to railways saw buying interest after the government yesterday approved FDI liberalisation in the sector.
Shares of some defence equipment makers initially moved up but succumbed to selling. The Cabinet yesterday cleared the proposal for raising FDI limit in defence to 49 per cent.
Second-line stocks were also on the selling list.
A mixed closing in the other Asian markets and a lower opening of European markets on signs of deepening Ukraine crisis also dampened trading sentiments, brokers said.
Meanwhile, Foreign portfolio Investors bought shares worth Rs 283.87 crore yesterday.
Key benchmark indices China, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan moved down by 0.14 per cent to 1.34 per cent while Japan’s Nikkei moved up by 0.48 per cent.
In Europe, markets were also trading lower before the European Central Bank decides monetary policy today. Key indices in France, Germany and the UK eased by 0.15 per cent to 0.39 per cent.
Jignesh Chaudhary, Head of Research, Veracity Broking Services said: “Indian stocks traded weak taking cues from global sell-off as growing tension in Ukraine created negative sentiments in the market. Also, investors fear that US Federal Reserve will raise interest rates next year for the first time since 2006.”
Turning to the local market, 16 scrips out of the 30-share Sensex pack ended lower while 14 closed higher.
Besides Infosys and TCS, other major Sensex losers were Hindalco (1.25 per cent), Sesa Sterlite (1.18 per cent), Tata Motors (1.16 per cent), Tata Power (0.73 per cent), Gail India (0.68 per cent), HDFC (0.66 per cent), HUL (0.64 per cent) and Axis Bank (0.53 per cent).
However, Tata Steel moved up by 0.96 per cent, followed by ONGC 0.88 per cent, M&M 0.81 per cent, Coal India 0.71 per cent, SBI 0.43 per cent and Maruti Suzuki 0.38 per cent.
Among the S&P BSE sectoral indices, IT fell by 1.27 per cent, followed by Teck 1.14 per cent, Realty 0.34 per cent and Power 0.31 per cent.
Mid-cap and small-cap indices declined by 0.55 per cent and 0.53 per cent respectively.
Market breadth was negative as 1,631 stocks closed with losses, 1,304 ended with gains and 117 ruled steady. Total turnover fell to Rs 2,680.64 crore from Rs 3,041.83 crore yesterday.