Benchmark Sensex closed lower by around 256 points in a volatile trade on Thursday, snapping its three-day gaining streak due to selling in banking, FMCG, and oil and gas shares amid weak Asian cues.

The BSE barometer fell by 255.84 points or 0.39 per cent to close at 64,831.41 points with 22 of its constituents ending in the red.

The index opened higher and later touched a high of 65,178.33 in early trade. It, however, failed to hold onto the gains and plunged 553 points from the day’s high to touch a low of 64,723.63 amid selling on the expiry of derivatives contracts for August month.

The broader Nifty of NSE also lost 93.65 points or 0.48 per cent to settle at 19,253.80 with 35 of its stocks ending in the red.

“Markets traded volatile on the monthly expiry day and lost nearly half a per cent,” Ajit Mishra, SVP, Technical Research, Religare Broking Ltd, said.

“A slew of weak economic indicators from the US, including a softened GDP figure, have heightened the likelihood of a pause in the Fed’s rate tightening, resulting in a downward trajectory of bond yields,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

However, this development had a limited impact on domestic sentiment on the day of expiry, with the market experiencing declines ahead of the release of India’s GDP data, scheduled later in the day, Nair said.

Asian Paints dropped the most by 1.33 per cent. IndusInd bank fell 1.2 per cent, Axis Bank by 1.19 per cent, SBI by 1.12 per cent, Bajaj Finance by 1.07 per cent, Nestle by 1.04 per cent, and TCS by 0.97 per cent. Hindustan Unilever, Reliance Industries, Power Grid, and Kotak Bank also retreated.

Maruti Suzuki was the lead gainer, rising by 2.22 per cent. Titan advanced 1.09 per cent, UltraTech Cement by 1.02 per cent, and Tata Steel by 0.78 per cent. Jio Financial Services, Tech Mahindra, Wipro ICICI Bank, and Jio Financial Services also closed higher.

In the broader market, the BSE Midcap index edged lower 0.02 per cent while the Smallcap index bucked the weak trend to close 0.79 per cent higher.

In Asia, the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo rose by 0.9 per cent while the Hang Seng in Hong Kong declined 0.6 per cent and the Kospi in Seoul fell 0.2 per cent. The Shanghai Composite Index in China declined 0.6 per cent after Chinese economic growth fell to 0.8 per cent in Apil-June this year.

In Europe, benchmark indices were up in early trade. The FTSE 100 in London gained less than 0.1 per cent, the CAC 40 in Paris rose 0.2 per cent, and the DAX in Frankfurt advanced 0.6 per cent.

Brent crude rose by 0.52 per cent to $86.31 per barrel.

On Wednesday, Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) were net sellers of domestic equities as they offloaded shares worth ₹494.68 crore.

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