The Indian equity markets witnessed selling pressure for the sixth straight day on Wednesday ahead of the expiry of monthly derivative contracts for March. In a cautious trading, the S&P BSE Sensex closed at 28,111.83, down 49.89 points and CNX Nifty fell 12.15 points to end at 8,530.80.
While the Nifty corrected over six percent from its all-time high of 9119.20 hit on March 4, the Sensex has hit its lowest closing level in nearly two-and-a-half months.
Traders believe that caution ahead of derivatives expiry and portfolio reshuffling ahead of the fiscal year ending is likely to have weighed on the markets. Market participants expect the sell-off to intensify on Thursday if the rollover of futures position fails to pick up.
"The rollover till now has been below average. Just 39-40% of the positions got rolled till yesterday. On an average, we see around 45-50% getting rolled," said Yogesh Radke, head of quantitative research at Edelweiss Capital, to NDTV Profit.
If markets see a sharp sell-off, then 8,500 will act as a major support for Nifty index, added Mr Radke.
NPTC topped the list of losers among Sensex and Nifty stocks on Wednesday with its share price closing down over 3.5%.
However, in the broader market, the main loser was IPCA Laboratories as its stock price slumped 12.55% following reports of import alerts against its two manufacturing facilities issued by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).