The S&P BSE Sensex and NSE Nifty 50 indexes fell for sixth session in a row on Friday ahead of presentation of Union Budget for upcoming financial year on Monday as traders and investors were seen lightening their positions ahead of the major economic event, analysts said.
Markets witnessed a spike in volatility during the session as India VIX index spiked 4 per cent. The Sensex tumbled as much as 714 points and Nifty 50 index fell below its important psychological level of 13,600.
The Sensex ended at 46,285.77, down by 588.59 points or 1.26 per cent at closing on the Bombay Stock Exchanges and the Nifty 50 index dropped 182.95 points to end at 13,634.60.
The benchmarks opened higher and gave up gains in late noon deals. However, due to intense selling ahead of Union Budget in the last hour of trade led to indexes drop further.
Dr Reddy”s, Maruti, Bharti Airtel, Bajaj Auto, Infosys, TCS and Bajaj FinServ were the major losers.
On the other hand, IndusInd Bank, Sun Pharma, ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank ended with gains.
Analysts are of the view that the continued pullback in domestic markets was mainly led by profit-booking ahead of the Union Budget and important global events.
Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) offloaded shares worth a net Rs 3,712.51 crore on Thursday, according to exchange data.
Elsewhere in Asia on Friday, stocks markets closed lower and also saw their worst weekly losses in months.
On the forex market front, the rupee ended 9 paise higher at 72.96 against the US dollar on Friday.
The global oil benchmark Brent crude futures rose 0.66 per cent to $55.42 per barrel.