Mumbai: Equities erased early gains and ended flat in a volatile trade as market took a breather after two-session surge amid profit-booking on the National Stock Exchange (NSE) Wednesday.
The 50-share benchmark index Nifty fluctuated heavily between a high of 5,732.15 and a low of 5,669 before settling at 5,688.70, down 0.25 points over the last close.
Sharp decline in headline inflation amid hopes of contraction in current account deficit following a fall in global commodity prices had fuelled hopes of a rate cut by RBI in its May 3 policy meet and triggered a rally in bourses.
Trading resumed on a firm note with buying in heavyweights and rate-sensitive counters amid supportive Asian cues, leading the Nifty to reclaim the important 5,700 mark.
A strong rupee against the dollar also weighed on the market in early trade. But gains were capped due to selling in index heavyweight RIL despite healthy Q4 earnings reported by India's largest private corporate entity, and tech counters.
Market gave away entire gains in afternoon trade and slipped into the negative zone on the back of profit-taking at higher levels. It later cut losses and ended flat.
Financials, FMCG, auto, pharma and metal stocks attracted good buying support.
Meanwhile, the IMF downgraded the global economy growth forecasts for 2013 due to poor macroeconomic outlook.
Globally, Asian markets rebounded strongly after two- day sell-off due to encouraging industrial production data from US and robust corporate earnings. European shares were down in early trade on growth slowdown worries amid rumours of Germany's credit downgrading.
Some degree of stability in global commodity markets after recent slump also helped in improving sentiments in equity markets.
Sesa Goa, Ambuja Cement, M&M, Sun Pharma, Lupin, SBIN, ITC, ICICI Bank, PNB and Axis Bank were among top Nifty gainers. Key losers included RIL, Reliance Infra, ONGC, Tata Power, TCS, HCL Tech, BPCL, NMDC, HDFC and Asian Paints.
Turnover in the cash segment jumped to Rs 13,118.25 crore from Rs 10,709.77 crore yesterday. A total of 6,886.97 lakh shares changed hands in 64,20,595 trades. Market capitalisation stood at Rs 62,73,676 crore.