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Sensex ends below 18000

Heavy profit-booking in realty and IT stocks


MUMBAI: The Bombay Stock Exchange benchmark index, Sensex, plunged 228 points on Friday to close below the psychological 18000-level for the first time in about one month on fag-end brisk selling by nervous fund houses ahead of key economic data from the U.S.

Led by heavy profit-booking in realty, banking and IT stocks, the BSE 30-share bellwether closed the day lower by 227.94 points at 17998.41, its worst closing since July 30 (17868.29). The wide-based 50-share Nifty index of the National Stock Exchange, too, lost 1.26 per cent to finish at 5408.70. Analysts said nervous investors preferred to book profits ahead of crucial GDP data for the world's biggest economy, the U.S., and a statement from Federal Reserve Chief Ben Bernanke.

A smart climb in ONGC and Tata Steel was wiped off with all-round profit booking, especially in realty, banking and IT stocks. — PTI

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