Mumbai: The benchmark BSE Sensex ended lower by 58 points on Thursday at 27,506.71 on across-the-board selling in pharma, banking and oil stocks on weak corporate earnings, foreign investors remaining on the sidelines and Greece woes.
Shanghai index, which fell sharply by 6.50 percent on stake sales of two state-owned banks by a Chinese sovereign wealth fund rattled investors, too hit sentiments.
"The markets have been reeling under the pressure of Greece woes, derivative contracts expiry, less FIIs investments and weak corporate earnings. Sharp fall in Chinese market added to the negative sentiment," said Gaurav Jain, Director of Hem Securities.
Meanwhile, rating agency Moody's said that India's growth rate in the January-March quarter is likely to slip to 7.2 percent from 7.5 percent in the previous three months.
The BSE 30-share barometer opened on a firm note and advanced to the day's high of 27,666.37 following covering-up of short positions and value-buying in blue-chip stocks.
However, offloading of positions by participants in view of May month expiry pulled it into negative zone to touch a low of 27,354.35. The Sensex settled 57.95 points or 0.21 percent down at 27,506.71.
The gauge had gained 33.25 points in yesterday's session.
The 50-issue Nifty continued its slide for the fourth session and lost 15.60 points to close at 8,319. It touched a low of 8,270.15 in day trade but a flurry of buying at the fag-end trimmed losses.
Participants were seen offloading their long positions in Futures and Options (F&O) segment instead of carrying them forward to the June series, traders said.
Meanwhile, foreign portfolio investors sold shares worth Rs 934.98 crore yesterday as per provisional data released.
"Muted earnings from some of index counters also inched choppiness across the board. Also, some of participants remained on the sidelines and refrained from any activity ahead of gross domestic product (GDP) data," said Jayant Manglik, President-retail distribution of Religare Securities.
On global front, Asian indices like Hong Kong fell by 2.23 percent and Singapore by 0.21 percent while those in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan moved up in the range of 0.20 percent to 0.39 percent.
European stocks were trading lower as a reported deal between Greece and its creditors hasn't come through.
Back home, of 30-share Sensex, 18 scrips ended lower.
"Today local equities traded low on the expiry day led by declines in blue chips. Blue-chips continued to slip down on disappointing results which dented the confidence of investors over the market," said Jignesh Chaudhary, Head Of Research at Veracity Broking Services.
Cipla (2.58 pc) was the biggest loser on the BSE, followed by, Tata Power (2.18 pc), Sun Pharma (1.94 pc), M&M (1.93 pc), Bharti Airtel (1.76 pc), Dr Reddy's (1.74 pc), Hindalco (1.57 pc), RIL (1.15 pc), SBI (1.12 pc) and Tata Steel (1.11 pc).
However, Vedanta rose by 2.53 percent, followed by Tata Motors (2.52 pc), Infosys (2.30 pc), Hero MotoCorp (1.73 pc) and BHEL (1.16 pc).
Among the sectoral indices, healthcare fell by 1.31 percent and bankex by 0.51 percent, while consumer durables rose by 1.31 percent, IT by 0.67 percent and teck 0.41 percent.
Total market breadth remained negative as 1,406 stocks closed lower, 1,255 finished higher and 115 ruled steady.
The total turnover dropped to Rs 2,583.89 crore from Rs 2,769.66 crore yesterday.