Stocks trimmed some gains in afternoon trade after hitting intraday high in early afternoon trade. At 13:26 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, was up 240.48 points or 0.73% at 33,189.69. The Nifty 50 index was up 82.10 points or 0.81% at 10,248.80. FMCG stocks gained. Telecom stocks rose. Shares of index heavyweight and cigarette major ITC advanced.
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.
Index heavyweight and cigarette major ITC advanced 1.46% to Rs 256.70.
FMCG stocks gained. Colgate-Palmolive (India) (up 2.31%), Dabur India (up 1.35%), GlaxoSmithkline Consumer Healthcare (up 0.5%), Hindustan Unilever (up 1.77%), Marico (up 0.74%), Nestle India (up 1.2%), Tata Global Beverages (up 0.56%), Procter & Gamble Hygiene and Health Care (up 1.58%) and Jyothy Laboratories (up 1.49%) edged higher. Godrej Consumer Products (down 0.1%), Britannia Industries (down 0.75%) and Bajaj Corp (down 0.13%) edged lower.
Telecom stocks rose. Bharti Airtel (up 2.01%), MTNL (up 0.48%), Tata Teleservices (Maharashtra) (up 4.37%) and Reliance Communications (up 4.75%) gained. Idea Cellular (down 0.87%) fell.
Shares of Bharti Infratel lost 2.03%. Bharti Infratel is a provider of tower and related infrastructure and is a unit of Bharti Airtel.
AXISCADES Engineering Technologies was up 4.73% to Rs 171.55 after Master Portfolio Services bought bulk shares of the company through open market transactions yesterday, 7 December 2017. Master Portfolio Services - Vallum India Discovery Scheme bought 1.95 lakh shares of AXISCADES Engineering Technologies at Rs 153.22 per share in a bulk deal on the NSE 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. 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%.
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.
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