The benchmark indices fluctuated between negative and positive territory in early afternoon trade. The Nifty slipped below the 11,150 mark.
At 12:24 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was down 2.85 points or 0.01% at 37,731.23. The Nifty 50 index lost 5.30 points or 0.05% at 11,148.35.
In the broader market, the S&P BSE Mid-Cap index slipped 0.19% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index shed 0.13%.
The market breadth was strong. On the BSE, 1152 shares rose and 1201 shares fell. A total of 146 shares were unchanged.
Total COVID-19 confirmed cases worldwide stood at 31,605,656 with 970,934 deaths. India reported 968,377 active cases of COVID-19 infection and 90,020 deaths, according to the data from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.
The NSE's India VIX, a gauge of market's expectation of volatility over the near term, fell 1.43% to 21.1025. The Nifty September 2020 futures were trading at 11,167.10, at a premium of 8.1 points compared with the spot at 11,159.
The Nifty option chain for 24 September 2020 expiry showed maximum Call OI of 54.93 lakh contracts at the 11,300 strike price. Maximum Put OI of 46.53 lakh contracts was seen at 11,000 strike price.
The Nifty Metal index fell 1.54% to 2,179.90. The index has tumbled 9% in five sessions.
Tata Steel (down 3.62%), Welspun Corp (down 2.69%), JSW Steel (down 2.37%) and SAIL (down 1.13%) declined while Hindustan Zinc (up 2.43%) and MOIL (up 1.85%) advanced.
Stocks in Spotlight:
Hexaware Technologies rose 1.70% at Rs 468.50 after the company in a newspaper advertisement announced that the promoter HT Global Holdings has accepted the discovered price of Rs 475 per share, as the final price for the delisting offer.
Central Bank of India slumped 6.10% to Rs 16.15. The state-run bank launched its qualified institutional placement (QIP) of shares on Tuesday (22 September 2020). The floor price has been set at 16.18 per equity share for the QIP, which is a 5.93% discount to Tuesday's closing price. The bank's capital-raising committee will meet on 25 September to consider and determine the issue price for the equity shares to be allotted to qualified institutional buyers.
Sun Pharmaceutical Industries shed 0.58% to Rs 507.50. The company said that its wholly-owned Japanese subsidiary has launched ILUMYA Subcutaneous Injection 100 mg syringe in Japan for the treatment of plaque psoriasis in adult patients who have an inadequate response to conventional therapies.