Mumbai: Stock prices were down yesterday as there was across-the-board selling, pushing down the benchmark indices.
The statement made by Finance Minister Jaswant Singh on the Securities and Exchange Board of India's probe into bank stocks' volatility also affected the market sentiment, with most of the public sector bank stocks closing sharply lower from Monday's closing.
The market moved in a narrow range in the first couple of hours of trading. However, there was heavy selling in the last 90 minutes of trading from both domestic and foreign institutional investors, pulling down the 30-share Bombay Stock Exchange Sensex by 47.79 points (1.43 per cent). On the National Stock Exchange the much broader 50-share S&P CXN Nifty closed 15.30 points (1.36 per cent) lower at 1,037.80.
The worst affected stocks in Tuesday's trading were the public sector bank stocks as all of them fell after the finance minister's statement. Among the major losers were Union Bank (down 10.58 per cent), Bank of Baroda (8.75 per cent) and Corporation Bank (8.01 per cent).
Brokers say the overall mood in the market is still optimistic, and with the likely inflow of funds into the equity market - from retail investors and foreign financial institutions - a sharp fall seems unlikely.