Mumbai, India (BBN) – The Sensex and Nifty were trading higher for a second consecutive session as bargain-hunting investors bought shares in sectors that were hit hard in a recent selloff.
Covering of pending short positions ahead of the December expiry of derivatives tomorrow — this year’s last — also supported the upside.
At 2:45pm, the 30-share BSE index Sensex was up 56.74 points or 0.22 per cent at 26,270.18 and the 50-share NSE index Nifty was up 23.5 points or 0.29 per cent at 8,056.35.
Among BSE sectoral indices, healthcare index gained the most by 1.2 per cent, followed by FMCG 0.89 per cent, TECk 0.74 per cent and IT 0.63 per cent, while only oil & gas index was down 0.09 per cent.
Top five Sensex gainers were Coal India (+2.18%), Dr Reddy’s (+1.6%), Wipro (+1.4%), HUL (+1.07%) and NTPC (+1.03%), while the major losers were Reliance (-1.21%), Tata Steel (-1.01%), Hero MotoCorp (-0.79%), ICICI Bank (-0.61%) and Tata Motors (-0.58%).
The NSE and BSE indexes, which gained about 1.6 per cent in the previous session, their biggest in nearly three weeks, had declined in eight out of nine sessions as of Monday’s close.
The NSE index hit a seven-month low in the start of the week on worries about capital outflows from emerging markets to the United States after Donald Trump’s election win and India’s move to ban higher-value currency notes.
But investors are once again picking up shares, although markets are expected to remain volatile given thin trading volumes this week.
“There has been some value-buying,” said Jayant Manglik, president of retail distribution at Religare Securities.
“Also a level of short-covering as Tuesday’s gains caught all the short-sellers by surprise.”
Nifty Pharma index, which rose about 2 per cent in the previous session, gained as much as 1.34 per cent on Wednesday with Piramal Enterprises and Divi’s Laboratories posting biggest gains. As of Monday’s close, the index had fallen 9.7 per cent in the past nine consecutive sessions.
Bharti Infratel, the top percentage gainer on NSE, rose as much as 3.7 per cent, after Goldman Sachs upgraded the stock to “neutral” on Tuesday, saying accelerated 4G deployment by telecom companies is likely to result in strong tenancy growth for the company.
Shares of Bharat Financial Inclusion rose as much as 10.5 per cent to their highest in nearly a week after the company had said on Tuesday that Morgan Stanley units raised stake by 1.1 per cent to 7.86 per cent on December 23.
Asia stocks followed Wall Street higher on Wednesday, while the dollar firmed against the yen following the release of upbeat US economic data overnight.
Crude oil prices held large gains on expectations of supply tightening once oil-producing nations implement a scheduled output cut.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.4 per cent.