Sensex down by 181.70 points

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Mumbai, Dec 18 (UNI) The benchmark Sensex of the Bombay Stock Exchange continued its downward slide for the second consecutive day today, ending lower by 181.70 points to close at 19,079.64 in choppy trade, marked by offloading of shares by investors at the fag end of trading.

The sensex resumed smartly with a gain of 77.79 points at 19,339.14 in early trade but failed to sustain the gains. Soon after, it slipped into the red. It touched an intra-day low near the 19,000 level with loss of about 366 points from an intra-day high of 19,375.07, before finally closing with a negative gap in late trade.

Similarly, the Nifty index at National Stock Exchange (NSE) fell 164 points to touch a day's low of 5, 710.66 from a high of 5,874.60 and finally closed with a fall of 34.70 at 5,742.30 in late trade.

The market breadth was negative in late trade, improving substantially compared to a weak breadth in mid-morning trade. FMCG, healthcare and consumer durable stocks gained. Banking, metal and capital goods stocks edged lower along with Reliance Industries, traders said.

European markets and Asian markets traded mix today and US markets were low on concerns over the economy, amid signs of rising inflation and weakness in holiday shopping.

1,242 stocks advanced, 1,623 stocks declined and 27 stocks remained unchanged on BSE. 19 out of 30 stocks from the Sensex pack were in red. BSE clocked a turnover of Rs 8,007 crore, low from previous turnover of Rs 9641 crore. BSE Mid-Cap and BSE Small-Cap index failed to sustain gains on the second straight day and both indices outperformed the Sensex.

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