But then, the market did not stay in the red for long as bank, realty, capital goods and automobile stocks bounced back strongly as the bulls staged a telling comeback thanks to a strong rally across the globe and on hopes the new government would push forward reforms and come out with some measures to revive the economy.
Moving in a highly volatile manner, the market managed to stay on in the positive territory till a few minutes to close and the Sensex even looked set to cross the coveted 15,000 mark as the bulls held a firm grip. It was a massive intra-day jump for the Sensex as it moved from 13,834.13 to 14,930.54. However, due to heavy selling in the final hour of trade, the barometer plunged into the red and eventually ended the session with a small gain of 17.82 points or 0.12% at 14,302.03.
The National Stock Exchange's 50 stock Nifty index ended the day with a minor loss of 4.70 points or 0.11% at 4318.45. In intra-day trades today, the Nifty hit a high of 4509.40 and a low of 4167.65.
Realty stocks had a highly profitable outing today. Mirroring strong gains posted by key stocks in that space, the BSE Realty index shot up by 12.8%. Bank, capital goods, auto, power and metal stocks also recorded sharp gains. A host of PSU stocks and select consumer durables stocks moved up as well.
Information technology stocks fell sharply on rupee's advance against the U.S. dollar. The BSE IT index ended lower by over 10%. BSE Teck lost more than 5%. Pharma, FMCG and oil stocks were among the other prominent losers today.
Realty stock DLF (up 19.4%) was the top gainer in the Sensex pack. State Bank of India spurted 11.2%. Reliance Communications moved up by over 10.5%. Grasim Industries, Mahindra & Mahindra, Larsen & Toubro, Maruti Suzuki, ICICI Bank and ACC gained 6.5% - 9.5%.
Reliance Infrastructure (5.85%), ONGC (5.35%), BHEL (4.25%), Tata Steel (3.85%), Sterlite Industries (3.1%) and HDFC Bank (2.1%) also closed on a high note. Tata Motors ended with a modest gain. Tata Power and HDFC gave up their gains and settled just marginally higher than their previous closing levels.
Infosys Technologies ended lower by 11.65% today. Wipro and Tata Consultancy Services, the other IT heavyweights, lost 9.1% and 8.1% respectively. Pharma stock Ranbaxy Laboratories eased by 6.4%.
Index heavyweight Reliance Industries fell 5.25%. FMCG majors Hindustan Unilever and ITC drifted down by 3.9% and 5.6% respectively. Hindalco, Jaiprakash Associates, NTPC, Bharti Airtel and Sun Pharmaceuticals also ended on a weak note.
Reliance Capital, up 22%, was the biggest gainer in the Nifty index. Nalco gained nearly 17%. ABB, Unitech, SAIL, Reliance Power, Siemens, Punjab National Bank and Tata Communications also signed off on a firm note today.
Hero Honda, Cipla, HCL Technologies, Suzlon Energy, BPCL, Reliance Petroleum, Axis Bank and Ambuja Cements ended with sharp losses.
Several stocks from midcap and smallcap segments ended on a buoyant note today. The Midcap index moved up by 3.6% while the Smallcap barometer surged 2.52%.
The market breadth was pretty strong. Out of 2714 stocks traded on BSE today, as many as 1927 stocks romped home on a winning note. 739 stocks declined and 48 stocks ended flat.