Sensex gains 61 pts; Infosys, Tata Motors lead rise

The Sensex on Monday gained 61 points to close at 18,823.91 on robust buying in Infosys, Tata Motors and ITC, amid a positive trend in European shares.

Mumbai: The Sensex on Monday gained 61 points to close at 18,823.91 on robust buying in Infosys, Tata Motors and ITC, amid a positive trend in European shares.

The BSE benchmark index, which had gained 183 points in the previous session, opened marginally up and closed with a gain of 61.17 points, or 0.33 percent, at 18,823.91.

Trading remained firm on continued buying by funds and retail investors on hopes that the government will soon announce more economic reforms, market experts said.

European indices that were up one percent each on reports of positive economic data, also aided the domestic sentiment.

Brokers said investors adopted a selective approach after the 30-share barometer gained 7.7 percent in September -- a month where the government hiked diesel price, allowed foreign direct investment in retail and aviation, among others.

The 50-share National Stock Exchange index Nifty today gained 15.50 points, or 0.27 percent, to 5,718.80.

Infosys rose by 2.96 percent, after recording heavy losses in the last few sessions. TCS also rose 0.66 percent. The rupee was trading at 52.5 level a dollar.

Select auto stocks also notched up smart rise after posting better-than-expected September sales. Tata Motors gained 2.65 percent, TVS Motors went up by 4.26 percent and Maruti Suzuki inched up 0.53 percent.

ITC, which rose 0.6 percent, also helped Sensex rise.

Profit-booking was seen in some private banks after strong rally witnessed in last two weeks, said Nidhi Sarswat, Senior Research Analyst, Bonanza Portfolio. ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank fell in 0.7-0.9 percent range but SBI gained 1.4 percent.

Infrastructure-related stocks, mostly outside Sensex, including IVRCL, NCC, Jaiprakash Asso and Reliance Infra advanced as end of Monsoon season is likely to revive construction activity, said analysts.

Retail buying in midcap and smallcap shares helped the individual BSE indices outperform the Sensex.

The Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) and the National Stock Exchange (NSE) will remain closed tomorrow, October 2, for observing "Mahatma Gandhi Jayanti".

In Asia, China, Hong Kong and South Korea markets were closed today while indices from Japan, Singapore and Taiwan ended lower today on reports that China's manufacturing shrank for second month amid a global slowdown.

European stocks, however, were trading higher in their afternoon deals. The CAC (France) was up 1.43 percent, the DAX (Germany) by 1.25 percent and the FTSE (UK) by 1 percent.

Meanwhile, India's manufacturing sector "held steady" in the month of September supported by faster output growth and rising export orders, an HSBC survey said. HSBC India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) ?- a measure of factory production -- stood at 52.8 in September, same as in August.

Out of the 30-share Sensex pack, 16 stocks finished with gains while 14 stocks ended with losses. Besides Infosys, other major gainers were Tata Motors (2.65 percent), Jindal Steel (1.93 percent), BHEL (1.86 percent), Hindalco (1.83 percent), SBI (1.40 percent), NTPERCENT (1.22 percent) and Sterlite Ind (1.21 percent).

Among losers, Bajaj Auto dropped by 1.11 percent, followed by Tata Power 0.94 percent, HDFC Bank (0.87 percent) and ONGC (0.84 percent).

11 out of 13 sectoral indices closed in the green with IT, Teck, CG and Auto segments taking the lead while Oil&Gas and Bankex closed lower. The BSE-IT shot up by 1.88 percent, followed by the BSE-Teck (1.91 percent), the BSE-CG (0.67 percent), the BSE-Auto (0.65 percent) and the BSE-Power (0.56 percent).

The total market breadth at BSE remained positive as 1,805 counters ended with gains while 1,102 that finished with losses. The total turnover dropped further to Rs 2,145.33 crore from the last Friday's level of Rs 2,685.87 crore.

Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) pumped in Rs 1,230.35 crore last Friday as per provisional data with stock exchanges.