The S&P BSE Sensex almost ended flat on Wednesday, falling by 19 points as investors remained cautious amid mixed quarterly earnings reported by companies.
The Sensex closed at 27,287 points, down 0.07%, while the 50-share Nifty fell by 10 points, or 0.12%, to end at 8,251.
Among the BSE sectoral indices, Realty was the biggest loser followed by Capital Goods. IT and Metal indices were the top gainers.
Banking stocks were also under pressure despite HDFC Bank's second quarter results meeting market expectations. The bank reported a 20% increase in its net profit to Rs 2,869 crore for the July-September quarter.
"In light of current macro environment, the current earnings trajectory of 20%+ yoy is strong which in our view, justifies a premium valuation multiple. Hence, we recommend BUY rating on the stock," said Vaibhav Agrawal, VP Research, Angel Broking in a note.
Bajaj Auto shares ended 3.2% higher after the company announced better-than-expected profit of Rs 933 crore for the second quarter in the current fiscal, led by improvement in operational performance.
"Along with the robust operating metrics, higher other income (other income grew 34% yoy) further boosted profitability. Net Profit at INR 933 cr beat our estimates of INR 919 cr. We currently have NEUTRAL rating on the stock but would review our estimates post interaction with the management," said Bharat Gianani, Sr. Research Analyst, Angel Broking.
Hero MotoCorp shares ended 0.5% higher after it posted 1.1% increase in its net profit for the September quarter.
"Following a marked slowdown in H1 FY16, we expect a decent recovery in two wheeler demand in H2 FY16 and going ahead in FY17 driven by a low base effect, VII pay commission and an overall economic recovery. Also the penetration in India for twoâ€wheelers is at lower levels when compared with their Asian counterparts. HMCL with deep rural penetration will be a big beneficiary of this trend," said Amar Ambani, Head of Research, IIFL.
Meanwhile, Federal Bank shares plunged by over 12%, touching a 52-week low after the bank announced 33% decline in profit for the second quarter.
Mphasis stocks ended nearly 10% higher, following an 18.2% increase in consolidated net profit in the quarter.
On the commodities front, gold prices have gone up by Rs 105 to Rs 27,335 per 10 grams at the bullion market in Delhi. Silver prices were down Rs 175 to close at Rs 36,900 per kg.