Mumbai: Slowest economic expansion during the third quarter in two years erased early stock market gains Wednesday, with the BSE Sensex ending flat - up just 22 points at 17,752.68.
A smart rise in RIL and ONGC kept the BSE 30-scrip index in the green.
Sensex opened with nearly 270 point gain and breached the 18k mark. However, selling pressure built up after the GDP numbers released this morning showed that economic growth rate slipped to 6.1 percent in the third quarter this fiscal, as against 8.3 percent in Q3 of 2010-11.
It then closed at 17,752.68, showing a marginal gain of 21.56 points or 0.12 percent from its last close.
The NSE 50-share Nifty moved up 9.70 points or 0.18 percent to finish at 5,385.20.
RIL, with heaviest weight on Sensex, gained 2.84 percent. State-owned ONGC surged more than 3.45 percent after the government said it will sell 5 percent stake in ONGC through an auction Thursday.
However, fall in HDFC Bank, L&T, ITC and HDFC weighed on the market sentiment.
Asian stocks ended higher, in line with gains in the US markets. Key indices in Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore and South Korea gained up to 2.04 percent, although China's market fell 0.95 percent.
"The fall in the market from the day’s high was triggered by the quarterly GDP number coming in below the street expectation. Moreover, higher crude oil price, too, dampened the sentiment," said Rikesh Parikh, VP Equities, Motilal Oswal Securities.
European stock markets also were trading higher in the early trade, gaining up to 0.75 percent.
FIIs continued to buy Indian equities and picked up shares worth Rs 727.59 crore yesterday as per provisional data from the stock exchanges.
Of the 30 Sensex scrips, 17 ended in the green.
Other major gainers included, Sterlite (2.98 percent), Tata Steel (2.90 percent), Wipro 2.72 percent), Tata Power (2.41 percent), Bharti (1.70 percent), Bajaj Auto (1.60 percent) and Hindalco Ind (1.26 percent).
However, L&T fell by 2.91 percent followed by HDFC Bank 2.34 percent, Jindal Steel - 1.81 percent, ITC - 1.35 percent, Hero Motocorp - 1.07 percent, HDFC - 1.02 percent and Maruti Suzuki - 1.02 percent.
Among the sectoral indices, the BSE-Oil&Gas rose 2.53 percent, PSU - 1.51 percent, Metal - 1.45 percent and Realty - 1.10 percent.
However, Capital Goods fell 1.59 percent, FMCG - 0.72 percent and the bankex by 0.59 percent.
The market breadth continued to be positive as 1,593 stocks ended in the green, while 1,295 stocks finished in the red. The total turnover rose to Rs 3,514.52 crore from Tuesday's Rs 2,816.50 crore.
First Published: Wednesday, February 29, 2012, 16:57