Mumbai: The BSE benchmark Sensex on Thursday closed 94 points down on selling pressure triggered by growth concerns amid monthly expiry in the derivatives segment.
The index closed 93.66 points lower, or 0.48 percent, to 19,323.80 on heavy selling in the last 30-minute of trade.
The broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty lost 35.50 points, or 0.60 percent, to 5,870.10, after touching the day's high of 5,930.80.
Brokers said selling pressure emerged after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said the country faces many challenges to achieve sustainable growth.
Describing the current economic situation as a difficult one, Manmohan Singh hinted at tough decisions like hike in energy prices and reduction of subsidies to achieve the growth target of 8 percent in the 12th Five Year Plan.
Investors offloading their positions created recently on the last day of December month expiry in the derivatives segment further fuelled the downtrend, brokers said.
In 30-BSE index components, 21 stocks fell led by two most heaviest - Reliance Industries by 1.20 percent to Rs 818.05 and Infosys by 1.06 percent to Rs 2,286.85. The two carry nearly 18 percent weightage on the benchmark.
The information technology sector suffered the most by losing 0.77 percent to 5,618.81 followed by oil and gas index by 0.69 percent to 8,312.85.