Mumbai: Equity benchmark indices continue to rally on Wednesday (February 12) amid positive global cues with the Sensex closing 349.76 points higher or 0.85% at 41,565.90, while Nifty ended up 93.30 points or 0.77% at 12,201.20. Major gainers on the Nifty were HUL, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Eicher Motors, and ICICI Bank, while top losers were Yes Bank, Bharti Infratel, SBI, and IndusInd Bank. About 984 shares advanced, 1490 shares declined, while 170 shares remained unchanged.
During early hours on Wednesday, equity benchmark gauges held firm led by a rally in metal and FMCG stocks amid positive global cues. At 10:15 am, the BSE S&P Sensex edged higher by 405 points or nearly 1 per cent to 41,621 while the Nifty 50 was up by 108 points at 12,216.
Most sectoral indices at the National Stock Exchange were in the positive terrain with Nifty metal and FMCG up by 1.2 per cent each. Among stocks, Vedanta gained by 1.9 per cent at Rs 143.50 per share while Tata Steel moved up by 1.7 per cent, and JSW Steel by 1.3 per cent.
FMCG major Hindustan Lever advanced by over 3 per cent at Rs 2,221.10 per share as Nestle India added gains of 1.2 per cent. The other prominent gainers were Grasim, NTPC, Power Grid Corporation, HDFC and Axis Bank, while Yes Bank, IndusInd Bank, Bharti Infratel, GAIL and Dr Reddy`s traded with a negative bias.
Meanwhile, Asian shares nudged higher amid hopes the worst of the coronavirus in China may have passed. Still, there was prevailing uncertainty about the outbreak which kept several investors wary. MSCI`s broadest index of Asia Pacific shares outside Japan was up by 0.31 per cent.
In Asia, mainland Chinese and Hong Kong shares rose almost 1%. The offshore-traded yuan reached two-week highs. The Thai baht, Korean won and Taiwanese dollar, reliant on Chinese tourism and trade, gained 0.3% to 0.5%. The yen slipped 0.3% to a three-week low against the dollar.
Brent crude futures rose from 13-month lows, helped by the likelihood producers would cut output. Brent is still down almost 20% from its peaks in early January.
The dollar had risen to four-month highs against a basket of currencies but inched off those levels on Wednesday.
US markets also got a boost from signs President Donald Trump might be re-elected in November, since centrist candidates for the Democratic nomination appear to be struggling .
The day`s big currency mover was the New Zealand dollar, which rose 0.8% for its biggest daily gain since December, after the central bank dropped a reference to further rate cuts, suggesting its easing cycle might be over.
(With Agency Inputs)