After trading at a fresh high for most of the day, the Indian equity markets on Thursday closed on a flat note as investors booked profits.
Overnight, Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down 0.3 per cent tracking continued selloff in crude oil prices, the S&P 500 was slightly lower and Nasdaq closed up 0.7 per cent, lifted by biotech stocks.
Mumbai: The 30-share BSE Sensex soared to a record high on Thursday in the intra-day trade led by banking sector stocks after Sebi made it easier for strategic investors to pick up shares in distressed firms under the restructuring schemes.
During the session, it breached the previous lifetime high of 31,430.32, reached on June 6. The BSE Sensex jumped over 130 points to 31,417 while the Nifty50 index gained almost 35 points to 9,669.
Internationally, crude oil plunged into bear phase on Thursday at United States dollars 44.82 a barrel after a brief recovery early in the session. "The Nifty reversed trend after hitting its highest intra-day level in more than two weeks in early afternoon trade", Deepak Jasani, Head - Retail Research, HDFC Securities, told IANS.
Asian cues remained mixed.
On the currency front, the rupee weakened by 6-7 paise to 64.59 to a U.S. dollar from its previous close of 64.52-53. "The volume in index options was double than yesterday (Wednesday) on account of weekly bank nifty expiry", said Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls.
Oil and gas companies fell, with GAIL (India) Ltd, the top loser on the Nifty index, down as much 3 percent, while Oil and Natural Gas Corp Ltd slipped as much as 1.6 percent.
Sector-wise, barring the BSE bankex which managed to end 0.16 per cent up, all others ended in the negative terrain.