The Indian equity benchmarks were trading on a flat note on Thursday as losses in banking and financial services shares like HDFC, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank, State Bank of India and Bharti Airtel were offset with gains in Reliance Industries, Asian Paints, Infosys, Bajaj Finserv and Hindustan Unilever. Meanwhile, analysts have warned of volatile moves during the day ahead of the expiry of August futures and options contracts. The Sensex declined as much as 90 points to hit an intraday low of 55,854.07 and Nifty 50 index touched an intraday low of 16,611.
Meanwhile, Asian shares stepped back on Thursday after a sharp rebound this week, though a solid Wall Street performance overnight contained losses in the region as rising vaccinations offset some of the worries over persistently high COVID-19 cases worldwide.
By 9:23 am, the Sensex was down 11 points at 55,932 and Nifty 50 index slipped 15 points at 16,619.
Twelve of 19 sector gauges compiled by the BSE were trading higher led by the S&P BSE Energy index's 1.13 per cent gain Power, Capital Goods, Utilities, Industrials and FMCG indices also rose between 0.4-1 per cent.
On the other hand, banking, financial services, auto, telecom and realty sector shares were witnessing a mild selling pressure.
Mid- and small-cap shares were witnessing buying interest as S& BSE MidCap and S&P BSE SmallCap indexes rose 0.65 per cent.
HDFC Life was top Nifty gainer, the stock rose 1.6 per cent to Rs 698. Reliance Industries, Tata Consumer Products, Wipro, HCL Technologies, Bajaj Auto, Infosys, Asian Paints and Mahindra & Mahindra also rose between 0.4-1 per cent.
On the flipside, Bharti Airtel, Power Grid, Eicher Motors, NTPC, Hindalco, Maruti Suzuki, State Bank of India, Indian Oil, Titan, Axis Bank and HDFC Bank were among the losers.
The overall market breadth was positive as 1,715 shares were advancing while 812 were declining on the BSE.