Global cues, bargain hunting lift equity markets

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Mumbai:  Positive global cues, bargain hunting and a strengthened rupee lifted the Indian equity markets on Monday.

Besides, recovery in crude oil prices, positive European economic data and latest reforms measures for the banking sector, too, buoyed investors’ sentiments.

However, profit booking at higher levels during the second half of the session capped gains.

The wider 51-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) gained 15.90 points or 0.18 per cent to close provisionally at 8,708.95 points.

The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 28,156.59 points, closed at 28,179.08 points — up 101.90 points or 0.36 per cent from the previous close at 28,077.18 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 28,256.65 points and a low of 28,075.95 points during the intra-day trade.

The BSE market breadth was tilted in favour of the bulls — with 1,663 advances and 1,181 declines.

On last Friday, the equity markets closed on a flat-to-negative note as profit booking, along with outflow of foreign funds and broadly lower global indices, subdued investors’ sentiments.

The barometer index fell by 52.66 points, or 0.19 per cent to 28,077.18 points, while the NSE Nifty slipped by 6.35 points or 0.07 per cent to 8,693.05 points.

“Positive global indices, value buying and recovery in crude oil prices have led to the upswing in the equity markets,” Anand James, Chief Market Strategist, Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services, told IANS.

“However, with major banks’ earnings results scheduled to be released from tomorrow onwards, caution emerged, capping gains.”

According to Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls: “CNX Nifty traded with sideways to firm sentiments on buying support from traders.”

“IT, auto and FMCG stocks traded lower due to profit booking, whereas banking, pharma and aviation stocks traded with mix sentiments.”

Desai added that downside pressure in “USD/INR” futures prices supported the firm trend in Nifty.

The Indian rupee strengthened by four paise to 66.85 against a US dollar from its previous close of 66.89 to a greenback.

In terms of investments, provisional data with the stock exchanges showed that the foreign institutional investors (FIIs) sold stocks worth Rs 325.13 crore, whereas the domestic institutional investors (DIIs) invested Rs 333.26 crore.

Major Sensex gainers during Monday’s trade were: ONGC, up 4.61 per cent at Rs 292.90; Tata Motors, up 2.67 per cent at Rs 559.10; ICICI Bank, up 2.47 per cent at Rs 284.55; Coal India, up 2.46 per cent at Rs 321; and Lupin, up 2.05 per cent at Rs 1,529.60.

Major Sensex losers were: Wipro, down 3.09 per cent at Rs 483.75; Asian Paints, down 2.25 per cent at Rs 1,127.55; Larsen and Toubro (L&T), down 1.06 per cent at Rs 1,494.55; Axis Bank, down 1.01 per cent at Rs 521.30; and Bharti Airtel, down 0.94 per cent at Rs

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