Mumbai: Anxiety over easing of interest rate by the Reserve Bank of India early next month weighed heavy on Indian equities markets Thursday as a benchmark index closed nearly 200 points in the red.
The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 26,105.89 points, closed at 25,894.97 points, down 192.45 points or 0.74 percent, from its previous close at 26,087.42 points.
The Sensex touched a high of 26,118.88 points and a low of 25,853.69 points intra-day.
The 50-scrip S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange ended trade at 7,721.30 points, 70.10 points or 0.90 percent down from its previous close.
The Reserve Bank of India will spell out the monetary policy for the next quarter in early August. Analysts are of the view that the central bank may keep the rates steady.
Heavy selling pressure was also observed in bank, capital goods, automobile, consumer durables and information technology (IT) scrips, while buying was observed in healthcare, metal and realty sectors.
The S&P BSE bank index plunged by 208.90 points, capital goods index was down 123.94 points, automobile index decreased 97.03 points, consumer durables index was down 84.71 points and IT index slipped 59.19 points.
However, healthcare index gained 20.98 points, metal index was up 6.10 points and realty index gained 4.57 points.
The major Sensex gainers were: Cipla, up 1.92 percent at Rs.456.30; Tata Steel, up 1.56 percent at Rs.553.40; Gail India, up 0.74 percent at Rs.436.35; Coal India, up 0.49 percent at Rs.368.95; and Reliance Industries, up 0.05 percent at Rs.1,006.
The losers were: NTPC, down 3.01 percent at Rs.145; Axis Bank, down 2.52 percent at Rs.391.85; Tata Power, down 1.66 percent at Rs.97.95; HDFC, down 1.60 percent at Rs.1,067.35; and Larsen and Toubro (L&T), down 1.33 percent at Rs.1,504.10.
Among the Asian markets, Japan's Nikkei fell 0.16 percent, and China's Shanghai Composite Index was 0.93 percent down. Hong Kong's Heng Seng, however, was 0.10 percent higher.
In Europe, London's FTSE 100 was down 0.26 percent, Germany's DAX Index fell 1.16 percent and France's CAC 40 was 1.00 percent down.