Mumbai: The Sensex and the Nifty Tuesday formed new lifetime highs but trimmed initial gains to close almost flat on profit-taking in select bluechips.
Cautious trading ahead of a US Federal Reserve policy meeting and a highly anticipated speech by Russian President Vladimir Putin on making Crimea part of the Russian Federation, also weighed on global sentiment, said traders.
After making a new lifetime high of 22,040.72, the BSE Sensex closed up by 22.81 points at 21,832.61. It breached previous historic high of 22,023.98 logged on March 10.
Heavyweights like ITC, Maruti Suzuki, RIL and SBI notched up handsome gains but Tata Motors, Infosys, ICICI Bank, L&T and TCS ended with losses, restricting the Sensex's rise.
The broad-based 50-issue CNX Nifty of the NSE edged up by 12.45 points, or 0.19 percent, to settle at 6,516.65. Like Sensex, it too formed a new lifetime high of 6,574.95 today. Its previous peak was 6,562.85 on March 11.
Jignesh Chaudhary, Head of Research, Veracity Broking Services said: "Indian indices posted new record taking cues from the better than expected data from the US, also the positive comments from Goldman Sachs that elections may fuel further gains in stocks."
Gradual decline in index majors due to profit taking, trimmed the initial gains and resultant flat closing in the end, according to Jayant Manglik, President-retail distribution, Religare Securities.
Goldman Sachs has upgraded India to "overweight" on reducing external vulnerabilities and said it expects the NSE Nifty to touch 7,600 level this year.
The BSE Midcap and Small cap indices firmed up 0.95 percent and 0.97 percent respectively on buying by retail investors.
Mirroring the domestic stock benchmarks, the rupee was trading slightly positive against the US dollar after jumping to 60.86 in morning.
Foreign Institutional Investors bought shares worth a net Rs 982.19 crore last Friday as per provisional data.
Key benchmark indices in China, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan and Singapore rose by 0.05 percent to 0.94 percent.
European markets were trading lower in their early trade as investors waited for German economic data. Key benchmark indices in France, Germany and UK shed 0.19 percent to 0.57 percent.
Moving back to the local market, 17 scrips out of the 30- share Sensex ended higher while 13 scrips finished lower.
Major Sensex gainers were Maruti Suzuki (7.58 percent), SBI (2.72 percent), ITC (2.56 percent), Coal India (2.48 percent), RIL (1.04 percent), Bajaj Auto (0.91 percent), Tata Power (0.90 percent), and NTPC (0.73 percent).
However, Tata Motors fell by 3.03 percent, followed by M&M 1.51 percent, Wipro 1.23 percent, Infosys 1.19 percent, Larsen & Toubro 1.17 percent, ICICI Bank 0.97 percent and TCS 0.87 percent.
Among the S&P BSE sectoral indices, FMCG rose by 1.84 percent, Power 1.27 percent, CD 0.89 percent, Oil&Gas 0.87 percent and Bankex 0.54 percent. In laggards, IT fell by 0.82 percent, Metal 0.60 percent and Realty 0.52 percent.
Total market breadth turned positive as 1,548 stocks ended in green, 1,254 concluded in the red and 174 ruled steady.
First Published: Tuesday, March 18, 2014, 17:59