Investors' wealth eroded by more than Rs 8 lakh crore in four consecutive sessions of stock market loss.
Recordings its fourth straight session of loss on Wednesday, the Sensex tumbled 937.66 points or 1.94 percent to close at 47,409.93. In the four straight sessions, the benchmark has fallen by 2,382.19 points or 4.78 percent.
Tracking the muted sentiment, the market capitalisation of BSE-listed firms declined by Rs 8,07,025.09 crore to Rs 1,89,63,547.48 crore in these four days.
"Volatility is normally higher on the last two days of monthly expiry but this time the fall with higher volatility show cautiousness amongst market participants before the Budget event.
"Earnings are coming out better-than-expected but profit-booking is seen in most companies that have declared results so far barring a few cases," according to Rusmik Oza, Executive Vice President and Head of Fundamental Research at Kotak Securities.
Axis Bank, Titan, IndusInd Bank, HDFC Bank, Dr Reddy's, HDFC and Asian Paint were the major laggards among the 30-share frontline companies' list, falling up to 4 percent.
In the broader market, the smallcap and midcap indices fell up to 1.38 percent. Sectorally, banking stocks declined 2.93 percent, followed by finance (2.72 percent), metal (2.54 percent), realty (2.28 percent) and auto (2.11 percent).
"Caution ahead of the Union Budget and scheduled derivatives expiry also added to the pressure," Ajit Mishra, VP - Research, Religare Broking Ltd, said.