The BSE benchmark, the Sensex ended 0.37% or 81.61 points lower at 21,774.61 points, while the NSE's Nifty ended 23.80 or 0.37% lower at 6,493.10 points. However, earlier markets had gained more than 0.6% intraday on the back of positive industrial output data (IIP) and easing inflationary pressures.
The index of industrial production for the month of January stood at 0.1%, highest since September 23, while the consumer price index (CPI) inflation for Februay slowed down to a 25-month low at 8.10%, as per government reports.
Market observers feel the selling pressure seen in the index heavyweights has pulled down markets. "The pressure on index heavyweight like Sun Pharmaceuticals and Infosys has dragged down the markets. Apart from this markets are facing resistance after the recent rally," said an analyst.
Experts expect markets to consolidate. As expected, Nifty is consolidating within a range. Positive momentum is likely to continue and Nifty may touch 6800. It may consolidate within a range of 6400 6600 in the near term. Support is at 6460 and 6350, Standard Chartered said in its morning note.
Among individual stocks, Infosys Ltd (-8.54%), Sun Pharmaceutical Industries (5.03%) and Sesa Sterlite (-1.54%) were the major losers. Among sectoral indices, BSE IT (-4.04%), BSE Realty (-3.81%) and BSE Healthcare (-0.99%) were the major losers.
Shares of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries fell more than 6% intra-day on Thursday on news of a US FDA import alert over its Karkhadi unit in Gujarat. The scrip closed 5.03% lower at Rs 573.60 on the BSE. Meanwhile, shares of Infosys plunged more than 9% intra-day on Thursday after the IT giant on Wednesday said that it might only be able to meet the lower end of its annual revenue growth guidance. The scrip closed 8.54% lower at Rs 3357.50 on the BSE.
Among Asian Indices, the Nikkei ended 0.10% lower to close at a a one-and-a-half week low. Hang Seng (-0.67%) and Straits Times (-0.52%) ended lower. Shanghai Composite (1.07%), Taiwan Taiex (0.73%) and Jakarta Composite (0.89%) ended in the green.