The benchmark BSE Sensex and NSE Nifty indices slipped into negative territory in noon trading, after touching fresh life-time highs earlier in the day due to emergence of weakness in information technology stocks ahead of the Infosys quarterly numbers scheduled later in the day. At 12:00 pm, the BSE Sensex was at 49,477.50, lower by 40 points or 0.11 per cent and the NSE Nifty was at 14,561.50, down six points. The broader markets had edged lower, with the BSE mid-cap index shedding 0.3 per cent at 19,132.79 and the BSE smallcap index losing 0.2 per cent at 18,874.40.
Continuing with the momentum witnessed in the past 12 trading sessions, the Sensex had opened the day at 49,7653.93 and touched an intra-day high of 49,697.18, just around 300 points shy of the 50,000 mark. However, the markets were unable to sustain the gains as weakness in information technology stocks negated the gains in the auto and energy space.
Meanwhile, the rupee had opened higher by 8 paise at 73.17 per dollar versus Tuesday’s close of 73.25, amid buying seen in the equity market.
Infosys, Wipro and CESC will be among the major companies to announce their numbers during the day.
M&M, IOC and Bharti Airtel were the top gainers among Sensex stocks, adding 3.8-4.3 per cent each. BPCL, NTPC and ONGC were the other significant gainers on the BSE. HDFC, UPL and TCS were among the laggards.
Among the earnings candidates for the day, Infosys had edged higher by 0.2 per cent at Rs 1,375.80 and Wipro had strengthened by 0.4 per cent at Rs 459.10 on the BSE ahead of their December quarter numbers.
The BSE market breadth turned weak. Out of 3003 stocks traded on the BSE, there were 1,212 advancing stocks as against 1651 declines.