The benchmark BSE Sensex slipped for a fourth session today by falling 201.62 points to crash below the 27,000-mark, ahead of the monthly derivative contracts expiry and as the US Federal Reserve hinted at a possible interest rate hike in December.
Among other factors, concerns over corporate earnings so far, the rupee depreciating by 27 paise against the dollar and a lower opening in European markets also weighed.
The BSE 30-share Sensex after resuming in positive zone soon slipped as participants indulged in squaring-up long positions. The index finally settled 201.62 points or 0.75 per cent down at 26,838.14 -- its lowest closing since October 14.
The gauge has now lost 632.67 points in four sessions.
The 50-issue NSE too continued its slide for the fourth session and lost 59.45 points or 0.73 per cent to close at 8,111.75. Intra-day, it dipped below the 8,100-mark to hit a low of 8,098.
Participants were seen offloading their long positions in Futures and Options (F&O) segment instead of carrying them forward to the next series for November month, brokers said.
Asian markets finished mostly mixed, while European indexes were down in their early trade after the Fed signaled it is prepared to raise interest rates this year.
Indian shares remained subdued, tracking global cues, with 22 scrips settling lower from the 30-share Sensex pack.
The major losers were BHEL, Axis Bank, Sun Pharma, Coal India, SBI, HUL, ITC, Bharti Airtel, GAIL, Hindalco, NTPC, L&T, Maruti Suzuki, TCS and Infosys.
Bucking the trend, shares of Dr Reddy's, Vedanta, Tata Motors, Lupin, RIL, Bajaj Auto, Hero MotoCorp and Tata Steel ended up to 2.59 per cent in the green.
Sectorwise, the BSE PSU index suffered the most by losing 1.39 per cent, followed by power (1.11 pc), bankex (1.10 pc), capital goods (1.09 pc), FMCG (0.98 pc), metal (0.85 pc) and oil&gas (0.82 pc).
Selling pressure also dragged down the BSE mid-cap index by 0.44 per cent and small-cap by 0.42 per cent.
Meanwhile, foreign investors sold shares worth Rs 731.17 crore yesterday, as per provisional data.