The Indian markets closed in the red on Wednesday, weighed down by poor global cues and a laggard performance by the auto, metal and banking sector stocks.

At the finish, the Sensex was down 169.19 points (0.85 per cent) at 19817.63, while the Nifty had slipped 54.75 points (0.90 per cent) at 6001.85.

All the sectoral indices with the exception of the oil and gas index closed in negative territory. The collapse in sectoral indices was led by the auto index which was down 2.40 per cent, metal (2.10 per cent) and banking (1.66 per cent).

The top gainers on the BSE were Reliance Industries (up 1.72 per cent), Dr Reddy's (1.43 per cent), TCS (1.03 per cent), NTPC (0.19 per cent) and GAIL (0.17 per cent). The top losers were M&M (down 2.95 per cent), Jindal Steel (3.11), Tata Motors (3.24 per cent), Maruti (3.43 per cent), and Hindalco (4.38 per cent).

On the NSE, Reliance, HCL Tech, TCS, Dr Reddy's and PowerGrid were the top gainers, while Hindalco, Reliance Infra, JP Associates, Tata Motors and Jindal Steel were the top losers.

Asian markets were mostly down with Japan’s Nikkei index falling on a rise in the yen against the dollar. The yen rose on remarks from a Japanese Minister that a weak currency would not be good for the economy as it would raise import prices. The release of key data in China later this week also kept Asian markets on edge.

At 3.30 p.m. Japan’s Nikkei 225 was down 278.64 points (2.56 per cent) at 10,600.44, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was down 24.52 points (0.10 per cent) at 23,356.99, Singapore’s Straits Times was up 12.43 points ( 0.39 per cent) at 3,208.50, and South Korea’s Kospi was down 6.29 points (0.32 per cent) at 1,977.45.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended up 27.57 points at 13534.89 on Tuesday against the previous close, while the S&P 500 was up 1.66 points at 1472.34. The stock indices closed higher on higher-than-expected retail sales data for December.

(This article was published on January 16, 2013)
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