Sensex closes in red; FMCG, auto stocks lose
Mumbai, Feb 22 : A benchmark index for Indian equities markets fell for the second straight day Friday with heavy selling in fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) and automobile scrips.
However, healthcare, information technology (IT) and oil and gas stocks gained.
After losing more than 300 points on the back of weakness in global bourses Thursday, the 30-scrip Sensex opened at 19,341.90 points Friday and closed at 19,317.01 points, down 8.35 points or 0.04 percent from its previous close at 19,325.36 points.
The Sensex touched an intra-day high of 19,401.75 points and a low of 19,289.83 points. The midcap index was up 1.59 points, while the smallcap index was higher by 7.15 points.
The wider 50-scrip S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) closed flat, down 1.95 points or 0.03 percent at 5,850.30 points.
The FMCG index closed lower by 81.17 points, followed by the automobile index, down 59.65 points, and metal index, down 51.08 points.
However, the BSE healthcare index ended 62.21 points up, while IT index closed 54.64 points higher. The oil and gas index was up 52.56 points, followed by the TECk index, up 50 points.
The major losers included Hindustan Unilever, down 2.60 percent at Rs.455.40; Coal India, down 2.31 percent at Rs.332.35; Maruti Suzuki, down 2.09 percent at Rs.1,439.75; HDFC, down 1.84 percent at Rs.800.35; and Tata Motors, down 1.60 percent at Rs.293.00.
The gainers included Bharti Airtel, up 4.64 percent at Rs.309.80; Wipro, up 2.43 percent at Rs.415.55; Sun Pharma, up 1.96 percent at Rs.811.30; ICICI Bank, up 1.22 percent at Rs.1,091.65; and Infosys, up 1.06 percent at Rs.2,836.55.
Among other Asian markets, Japan's Nikkei closed 0.69 percent higher, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng ended 0.54 percent down. China's Shanghai Composite Index closed lower by 0.51 percent.
In Europe, Britain's FTSE 100 was up 0.77 percent, while the German DAX was trading 0.54 percent higher. The French CAC 40 was also up 1.27 percent.