Domestic equity benchmarks swung as selling pressure in information technology and auto heavyweights outpaced advances in power and oil & gas stocks. The S&P BSE Sensex, which rose as much as 179 points in intraday trade, traded 51 points or 0.14 per cent lower at 35,854 as of 1:16 pm. The broader NSE Nifty 50 Index also declined after hitting an intraday high of 10,865. The index fell 0.14 per cent or 15 points to 10,792, below its psychologically important level of 10,800 ahead of expiry of derivative contracts for the month of February later in the day.
Fourteen of 19 sector gauges compiled by BSE were trading higher led by a 1 per cent gain in the S&P BSE Utilities Index. Power, oil & gas and energy indexes also rose around a per cent each. On the other hand, S&P BSE Information Technology Index was the top loser, down 0.7 per cent.
Analysts say caution prevailed among traders ahead of expiry of the monthly futures & options (F&O) contracts.