The BSE Sensex today fell further by 144 points as investors booked profits at high levels after inflation soared to a three-month high for March dashing hopes of any rate cut by the Reserve Bank.
The 30-share barometer fell by 144.03 points, or 0.64 per cent to close at 22,484.93. It shuttled between a high of 22,737.31 points and 22,416.24 points during the day. The index had lost 86 points in the previous session.
The market started the day on a high note after IT major Infosys Ltd posted attractive results for the last quarter of FY14. But later the markets tumbled after reports that inflation increased to 5.7 per cent in March from 4.68 per cent in February.
Brokers said selling pressure centred around financial and interest-sensitive stocks on fears RBI may keep interest rates high due to rise in inflation.
They said a weak industrial production data and reports of a lower trend in global markets on slowing China's economic growth further influenced the sentiment.
The broad-based National Stock Exchange index NSE Nifty lost 43.20 points, or 0.64 per cent to 6,733.10 after touching a high of 6,813.40.
In 30-BSE index components, 20 stocks declined led by State Bank of India, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank and Reliance Industries.
Maruti Suzuki, Mahindra and Mahindra, BHEL, Hindalco Ind. and ITC also declined.
Meanwhile, IT shares led by TCS, rose up to 4 per cent, cushioning the market from further fall.
Wipro shares jumped 3.71 per cent while Infosys gained up to 1 per cent. Infosys reported 25 per cent increase in net profit for the quarter ended March 31, 2014.
United Spirits jumped 11.58 per cent to Rs 2,853.15 after liquor major Diageo made an open offer to acquire an additional 26 per cent stake in the company.
Sanjeev Zarbade, Vice President- Private Client Group Research, Kotak Securities
The Sensex lost 144 points in todayís trading session led by bearishness in Metal and Bank stocks as Hindalco, Axis Bank, HDFC, Sesa Strelite and Tata Steel fell sharply. On the other hand, TCS and Wipro were notable gainers. For the fourth quarter, Infosys reported PAT of Rs.29920 mn, which was higher than estimates. The company guided for 7-9% growth in USD revenue. WPI inflation came in higher than estimates at 5.7% (a 3 month high), which was taken negatively by the rate sensitive sectors.