Mumbai | Benchmark equity indices Sensex and Nifty ended almost flat in a see-saw trade on Tuesday as investors traded cautiously, awaiting cues from the US Federal Reserve's policy stance.
Foreign fund outflows and elevated level of crude oil prices also weighed on the investor sentiment, traders said.
The 30-share BSE Sensex slipped 29.07 points or 0.04 per cent to settle at 66,355.71. During the day, it touched an intra-day peak of 66,559.29 and hit the lowest level of 66,177.62.
The NSE Nifty inched up by 8.25 points or 0.04 per cent to end at 19,680.60. The broader index moved between the range of 19,729.35 and 19,615.95.
"Indian indices hovered along the flat line, waiting ahead for the crucial decision of Fed policy. Metal stocks rose due to China's commitment to provide policy support to its realty sector, while utilities were up in anticipation of demand & improvement in operating margin," said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.
In the previous two sessions, the indices have seen correction after reaching their lifetime peaks on Thursday. Nair attributed the correction in the market to lower-than expected quarterly performance of some bellwether companies, outflow of foreign funds and stronger dollar.
"The recent correction of the domestic market can be attributed to several factors, including muted start to Q1 results, a reversal in FII activity, a rising dollar index, and an increase in crude oil prices," he added.
From the Sensex pack, JSW Steel, Tata Steel, NTPC and UltraTech Cement emerged as major winners, closing the day with a gain of up to 3.33 per cent.
On the other hand, Asian Paints, ITC, L&T and SBI were the laggards, ending the session up to 3.95 per cent lower.
Of the 30 Sensex stocks, 14 closed the day in green, while on the 50-stock index Nifty 25 scrips ended with gains.
On Monday, BSE Sensex fell 299.48 points or 0.45 per cent to settle at 66,384.78. The NSE Nifty declined by 72.65 points or 0.37 per cent to end at 19,672.35.
Elsewhere in Asia, markets ended mixed on Tuesday with Hang Seng gaining 4.10 per cent, Shanghai Composite rising 2.13 per cent, while the Nikkei 225 closing 0.06 per cent down.
European markets were moving upward with the UK's FTSE 100 trading 0.15 per cent higher. While France's CAC 40 was up 0.24 per cent, Garmany's DAX was 0.18 per cent higher.
The US markets ended broadly higher on Monday, with the S&P 500 registering a gain of 0.40 per cent.
Meanwhile, global oil benchmark Brent crude was trading 0.18 per cent lower at USD 82.59 a barrel.
Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) were sellers on Monday as they offloaded equities worth Rs 82.96 crore, according to exchange data.