Mumbai, Mar 21 (PTI) Pressured by banking and pharma

stocks, the market stayed in a state of weakness for the

second consecutive day today, coming on the heels of last

week’s stellar rally.

Data showing that domestic investors were net sellers

yesterday proved to be a dampener.

The market, according to traders, is in a phase of

consolidation after scaling record highs following BJP’s

mammoth win in UP and Uttarakhand and formation of its

governments in Goa and Manipur.

After hitting the day’s high of 29,585.05, the 30-share

Sensex closed at 29,485.45, down 33.29 points, or 0.11 per

cent. The gauge had fallen 130.25 points in the previous

session.

The NSE Nifty slipped below the 9,100-mark before ending

down 5.35 points, or 0.06 per cent, at 9,121.50.

“While FDA observations kept pharma space depressed,

banking stocks were also under pressure from potential farm

loan waivers,” said Anand James, Chief Market Strategist,

Geojit Financial Services.

But the rupee’s rising clout against the dollar on robust

capital inflows restricted the losses.

Divi’s Laboratories today slumped 19.77 per cent to a

52-week low of Rs 634.35 after the company said the US health

regulator has issued an import alert on the products

manufactured at one of its units in Visakhapatnam.

Idea Cellular tumbled 4.76 per cent, falling for the

second session in a row, after announcement of its merger with

Vodafone India to create the country’s largest mobile phone

operator.

Avenue Supermarts, the owner of D-Mart, made a stellar

debut on the bourses today by surging 114.30 per cent.

Healthcare dropped 1.44 per cent followed by bank, auto,

PSU and oil and gas. However, realty rose by 1.35 per cent and

FMCG 1.01 per cent.

While foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares

worth a net Rs 56.67 crore yesterday, domestic institutional

investors (DIIs) sold shares worth a net Rs 536.21 crore, as

per provisional data.

Drug major Dr Reddy’s topped the loser’s list by slumping

4.36 per cent while Axis Bank shed 3.28 per cent. Other major

losers were GAIL, Maruti Suzuki, RIL, Sun Pharma and ICICI

Bank.

The broader markets fell after investors locked in gains,

pulling down both mid cap and small cap indices.

Major Asian indices ended on a mixed note. Europe

displayed a similar trend.

“Nifty found value buying towards close, though limited,

and with few domestic triggers before Q4 numbers, markets

should keep its ear on global cues, especially with Brexit

being triggered on March 29,” added James. MORE

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.