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Key benchmark indices hit fresh intraday high in early afternoon trade as buying continued unabated. At 12:22 IST, the barometer index, the S&P Sensex, was up 273.54 points or 0.83% at 33,222.75. The 50 index was up 86.10 points or 0.85% at 10,252.80.

The buying momentum was backed by hopes that the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would win critical state elections in Gujarat beginning this weekend. The election in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's home state is a key test for the BJP, ahead of general elections in 2019. The Gujarat Assembly Elections 2017 will take place in two phases on 9 December 2017 and 14 December 2017. Counting of votes will take place on 18 December 2017.

The opened above the psychologically important 33,000 mark and extended gains as the session progressed. The rose 294.51 points, or 0.89% at the day's high of 33,243.72 in early afternoon trade, its highest intraday level since 1 December 2017. The index rose 84.99 points, or 0.26% at the day's low of 33,034.20 at the onset of trading session. The rose 94.50 points, or 0.93% at the day's high of 10,261.20 in early afternoon trade, its highest intraday level since 1 December 2017. The index rose 28.55 points, or 0.28% at the day's low of 10,195.25 at the onset of trading session.

Among secondary barometers, the Mid-Cap index was up 0.73%. The Small-Cap index was up 1%. Both these indices outperformed the

The broad market depicted strength. There were almost two gainers against every loser on 1,631 shares rose and 846 shares fell. A total of 129 shares were unchanged.

Auto stocks were in demand. Escorts (up 2.80%), Maruti Suzuki India (up 2.34%), Tata Motors (up 1.75%), Ashok Leyland (up 1.54%), Eicher Motors (up 0.63%), Mahindra & Mahindra (up 0.58%), (up 0.41%) and TVS Motor Company (up 0.29%), edged higher. Two-wheeler major Hero MotoCorp was down 0.50% to Rs 3,537.65.

Most power generation shares rose. Jaiprakash Power Ventures (up 4.51%), CESC (up 2.08%), Tata Power (up 1.76%), JSW Energy (up 1.17%), GMR Infrastructure (up 1.16%), Torrent Power (up 1.13%), Adani Power (up 1.01%), Reliance Power (up 0.54%) and NHPC (up 0.53%), edged higher. NTPC (down 0.42%) and Reliance Infrastructure (down 0.64%), edged lower.

State-run Coal India was down 0.02%. State-run Power Grid Corporation of India was down 0.67%.

Index heavyweight Reliance Industries was down 0.61% at Rs 924.95. The company announced during trading hours today, 8 December 2017, that it acquired stake in a newly incorporated entity viz Dreketi S.A. in Uruguay (hereinafter called 'Dreketi') and consequentially Dreketi has become wholly-owned subsidiary of the company. Currently, Dreketi is not engaged in any business activity. This is a part of company's plan to strengthen its marketing efforts in Latin American region.

Shriram EPC was locked at 20% upper circuit at Rs 24.30 after the company reported consolidated net profit of Rs 13.62 crore in Q2 September 2017, compared with net loss of Rs 21.95 crore in Q2 September 2016. Net sales rose 173.1% to Rs 218.69 crore in Q2 September 2017 over Q2 September 2016. The result was announced after market hours yesterday, 7 December 2017.

Sonata Software gained 3.50% after the company said that its wholly owned subsidiary, Sonata Europe has entered into an agreement with IZARA ApS to acquire 15% stake in Danish company. Sonata Software plans to grow its presence in Nordic region with this acquisition. No government approvals are required for the transaction. The company will pay cash consideration of equivalent to $96,000. IZARA ApS is an IT consulting Danish company. They also serve clients in US and Nordic markets. The announcement was made after market hours yesterday, 7 December 2017.

Overseas, Asian stocks were trading higher following a broad-based rally in US equities. Japan's economy grew at a much faster pace than initially estimated in the July-September quarter. The nation's gross domestic product grew at an annualized pace of 2.5% from the previous three months, according to government data released Friday.

US stocks closed higher Thursday, with the S&P 500 snapping a four-session losing streak on the back of gains in the technology, industrials and materials sectors. Traders looked ahead to the monthly jobs report due Friday. Initial US jobless claims, a way to measure layoffs, fell by 2,000 to 236,000 in the seven days ended 2 December 2017. The S&P 500 index rose 0.29%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.29%, to 24,211.48. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index rose 0.54%.

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, December 08 2017. 12:24 IST