The benchmark BSE Sensex opened 59.64 points higher, but soon turned choppy in early trade, as investors cashed profits in metal, healthcare, PSU and auto stocks, amid weak Asian cues after US-China trade spat escalated. After opening on a positive note, the BSE 30-share barometer dropped by 56.15 points, or 0.15 per cent, to 36,183.47 led by fall in index majors Hero Motorcorp, Vedanta, Coal India and RIL shares.
The gauge had rallied 665.07 points in the previous three sessions on sustained buying by domestic institutional investors (DIIs). However, a rise in shares of index heavyweight TCS capped Sensex losses, after the IT major posted reported better-than-expected earnings. It was the top gainer in the Sensex pack, rising 2.02 per cent to Rs 1,915. The NSE Nifty index also fell by 17.40 points, or 0.16 per cent, at 10,929.85.
Other gainers were Asian Paints, HDFC, Adani Ports, M&M, Bajaj Auto, Axis Bank, Wipro, HUL, Sun Pharma, ONGC, Yes Bank and IndusInd Bank, rising up to 0.86 per cent. Meanwhile, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) sold shares worth a net Rs 20.73 crore, while DIIs bought shares worth a net Rs 293.96 crore yesterday, provisional data showed. A weak trend other in Asian bourses and sustained capital outflows weighed on investor sentiments here, brokers said.
Asian stocks declined after the Trump administration released the biggest list yet of Chinese goods it may hit with tariff increases. Japan's Nikkei fell 1.37 per cent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 1.68 per cent in early deals. Shanghai Composite Index was down 0.76 per cent. The US Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.58 per cent higher in yesterday's trade.