Mumbai: Equities witnessed modest profit- taking after a four-day winning streak as the benchmark CNX- Nifty dropped from its two-year high to close below the 6,000 mark at the National Stock Exchange (NSE) Monday.
The 50-share Nifty oscillated between a high of 6,042.15 and a low of 5,977.15 before settling at 5,988.40, a fall of 27.75 points, or 0.46 percent, over the last close.
Markets across the globe rallied the previous week after US lawmakers passed a last-minute Bill to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff that had threatened to plunge the world's largest economy back into recession.
After a buoyant start, the market failed to maintain its momentum and moved in a tight range in the absence of buying support amid lack of direction. Sell-off towards the tail-end, mainly in FMCG and financial scrips, dragged the key index into red and it posted its first losses of 2013.
Though the market ringed in the New year with a bang, investors and traders were expecting a pullback. Market participants also seemed cautious ahead of the IIP growth data and Q3 earnings season which starts with the technology major Infosys announcing its numbers on Friday, traders said.
FMCG stocks topped the sellers' list followed by financials, infra and select energy-related counters.
Metal stocks witnessed good buying interest after the Government imposed safeguard duty on imports of a certain variety of stainless steel from China.
Technology, auto and pharma were the other counters which moved higher. Elsewhere, OMC stocks such as HPCL and BPCL extended gains on hopes of diesel price hike.
L&T, JP Associates, HUL, HDFC, HDFC Bank, DLF, BHEL, ACC, GAIL and Ambuja Cement were the top losers from the Nifty bunch. The gainers included BPCL, Maruti, Cipla, Cairn, Sun Pharma, M&M, ONGC, Tata Steel, Infosys and Reliance Infra.
Turnover in cash segment declined to Rs 12,364.82 crore from Rs 12,595.11 crore last Friday. A total of 8,921.6 lakh shares changed hands in 61,49,133 trades. The market capitalisation stood at Rs 69,22,343 crore.