Markets close flat for the second day as consolidation continues

Today's session was almost like a repeat of yesterday, with a firm opening and sideways movement for most of the session followed by a decline towards the end.

Markets opened with a positive gap on favourable global cues. The US markets had a firm closing yesterday and most Asian markets were firm in early trades. The recovery in crude oil was very marginal to affect market sentiment too much.

After touching the day's highs, the indices started a slow drift-down till early afternoon. The indices were supported by gains in Reliance Industries, SBI and metal stocks while weakness in auto stocks exerted some pressure.

Late afternoon saw the indices inching back up wards, though they could not test the highs touched in morning trades. The last half hour saw selling pressure emerge and the indices declined sharply and wasted away most of their gains.

Sensex closed at 7343, down 3 points and the Nifty at 2242, yet another life time closing high with a gain of 4 points. Nifty July futures closed the day at a discount of 3 points to the spot index.
Tata Chemicals, Sun Pharma and Dabur were among the major gainers among Nifty stocks while Hero Honda, HDFC and Bharti were the major losers.

US markets recovered yesterday as a fresh set of corporate numbers boosted confidence. The indices had declined the previous day after Citigroup reported weak results. Yesterday however, strong earnings from IBM and Merrill Lynch helped the markets to close with gains.