The BSE benchmark Sensex today fell by over 59 points to 18,859.06 in early trade as funds and retail investors booked profits after recovery in the previous session amid a mixed trend in the Asian region.
The 30-share barometer, which gained 56.98 points in the previous session on Friday, moved down by 59.46 points, or 0.31 per cent, to 18,859.06, led by the weakness metals, capital goods, power and banking sector stocks.
Similarly, the wide-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty, moved down 22.50 points, or 0.39 per cent, to 5,697.20.
Brokers said besides profit-booking by speculators, a mixed trend at the Asian markets after US lawmakers failed to prevent the imposition of USD 85 billion in spending cuts that kicked in at the end of last week, influenced the sentiment.
In the Asian region, Nikkei at the Japan stock market, was trading 0.50 per cent higher, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index shed 1.02 per cent in early trade today.
Stocks to watch-March 4
(Reuters): Nifty futures on the Singapore Exchange fell 0.6 percent. The MSCI-Asia Pacific index, excluding Japan fell 1.2 percent.
Asian shares eased on Monday, as worries about China tightening its grip on the property sector on the eve of the country's annual parliamentary meetings compounded weak sentiment already dampened by a patchy global growth outlook.
U.S. stocks advanced modestly on Friday, leaving the S&P 500 with slight gains in a volatile week as strong economic data overshadowed growth concerns in China and Europe and let investors discount the impact of expected U.S. government spending cuts.
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