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The first full trading week of the new year failed to bring any cheers to market which remained in grip of selling and IT major Infosys Ltd's better-than-expected Q3 result was the only bright spot.
The benchmark S&P BSE Sensex extended its losses for the second consecutive week, dropping another 93 points on persistent selling pressure due to slowdown in foreign capital inflows coupled with strong US private-sector employment report which may encourage Federal Reserve to taper its bond-buying programme.
Contraction in India's services sector, whose contribution to GDP had been growing consistently, last month also dented the market sentiment.
The HSBC/Markit Purchasing Managers Index for the services industry fell to 46.7 in December from 47.2 in November as new orders declined. It was the sixth consecutive monthly drop in output and the longest period of continuous reduction since the 2008/2009 global financial crisis.
Shares of realty, capital goods, banking, consumer durable, power and metal sectors declined, while healthcare, FMCG, IT and tech shares firmed up on good buying enquiries.
The Sensex opened strong at 20,913.79 and moved up further to 20,971.23 on good buying from investors. However, the 30-share index fell afterwards to 20,625.17 on profit- booking before concluding at 20,758.49, posting a loss of 92.84 points, or 0.45 per cent, over the last weekend.
The key BSE barometer has lost 435.09 points, or 2.05 per cent, in the last two weeks.
The NSE benchmark Nifty moved down by 39.70 points, or 0.64 per cent, to settle at 6,171.45. The 50-share index has dropped 142.35 points, or 2.25 per cent, in the last two weeks.
Infosys shares ended lower by 0.47 per cent on weekly basis after surging 2.84 per cent on Friday as company posted 21.4 per cent rise in net profit for the third quarter and raising its revenue growth forecast for the next fiscal.
Second-line stocks continued to attract profit-booking by retail investors. The S&P BSE Midcap index dropped further by 1.17 per cent.
Local sentiment was affected after foreign funds sold equities for the first time this year. Foreign institutional investors sold shares worth a net Rs 381.34 crore during the week as per the Sebi's data including the provisional figure of January 10.
Jignesh Chaudhary, Head Of Research, Veracity Broking Services, said, "It was a pretty stressful and negative week for Indian equity markets where they traded weak and flat for almost better part of the week."
In the entire week, markets witnessed some deep selling pressures in the blue-chip stocks and also felt the pressure of the weak Asian markets. The FII community showed more interest in the debt segment then the equities segment where they invested over 800 million USD this week, he said.
"Markets are now keenly awaiting the Inflation data due later on Monday, 13th of January 2014, for further direction. Trading range of BSE Sensex is expected to be in 20,300 to 21,000, CNX Nifty 6110 to 6320," he added.