Markets ended lower on Wednesday, amid a rangebound trading session, weighed down by profit taking in Larsen & Toubro after the company reported disappointing fourth quarter earnings.
Larsen and Toubro Ltd posted a worse-than-expected 6.9% fall in quarterly profit as interest costs jumped for India's biggest engineering and construction company.
Net profit for fourth quarter fell to Rs 1,787 crore from Rs 1,920 crore last year, said the company, whose interests span shipbuilding to railways to real estate.
The 30-share Sensex ended at 20,062 down 49 points or 0.25% and the 50-share Nifty ended at 6,095down by 20 points or 0.32%.
On the global front, Asian markets ended higher in trades on Wednesday following a positive lead from Wall Street with Japan's Nikkei reaching a 5-1/2 year high, while the yen took a defensive stance ahead of the outcome of the Bank of Japan's (BOJ) policy meeting.
Nikkei advanced 246 points to close at 15,627, Seoul Composite gained 13 points to settle at 1,993, Straits Times jumped 10 points to settle at 3,454 and Taiwan Weighted jumped 16 points to close at 8,398.
While, Shanghai Composite and Hang Seng ended lower on the back of profit booking.
Investors are now looking forward to US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke's testimony to US lawmakers and the minutes of the Fed's May meeting, both due later today for further clarification on stimulus measures and economic growth.
Back home, on the sectoral front, BSE Realty and Capital Goods indices slumped between 3-4% followed by counters like Oil & Gas, PSU and Power, all slipping by 1%
Larsen and Toubro (L&T) dipped nearly 6%, falling 7% from intra-day’s high after reporting a 7% year-on-year (y-o-y) drop in net profit at Rs 1,788 crore for the quarter ended March 31, 2013 (Q4) due to higher finance cost.
The engineering major had profit of Rs 1,920 crore in a year ago quarter.
Other notable losers were Tata Power, Sterlite, RIL, GAIL, BHEL, Hero Moto and ONGC.
On the gaining side, Sun Pharmaceutical Industries moved higher by 3%, crossing Rs 1,000 mark, at Rs 1,002 on the National Stock Exchange.
Meanwhile, BSE Midcap index slipped by 0.83% whereas BSE Smallcap index ended lower by 0.82%.
The market breadth in BSE ended weak with 1,451 shares declining and 866 shares advancing.
Shares of the state-owned oil marketing companies such as Bharat Petroleum Corporation, Hindustan Petroleum Corporation and Indian Oil Corporation were down more than 3% each on concerns of implementation of fuel pricing mechanism.
Styrolution ABS (India) tanked over 8%, extending its previous day’s 8.8% fall the company said bids received in offer-for-sale (OFS) at or above the clearing price of Rs 426 have been considered for allocation.
Puravankara Projects dipped over 8% after the realty firm has fixed the floor price for its proposed private placement issue at Rs 80 per share.
Omaxe ended lower by over 6%, extending its previous day’s 7.3% fall after the promoter of real estate firm got poor response for its share sale offer.