The Indian markets ended Thursday's volatile session with marginal gains amid weekly options expiry supported by gains in Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) and Reliance Industries.
The S&P BSE Sensex closed at 49,584, up 92 points, or 0.19 per cent. The index hit an intra-day high and low of 49,664 and 49,182, respectively. The broader Nifty50 index, meanwhile, ended the session at 14,596, up 0.21 per cent. In the broader markets, the S&P BSE MidCap and SmallCap indices ended 0.29 per cent and 0.17 per cent higher, respectively.
IndusInd Bank (up 3 per cent) and TCS (up 2.7 per cent) were the top Sensex gainers, along with Reliance Industries that rose 1 per cent. On the other hand, HCL Tech (down 2 per cent) led the list of losers. Out of the 30 Sensex constituents, 16 ended the day in the green.
Among other individual stocks, Infosys plunged as much as 5 per cent while Wipro fell 6 per cent in the intra-day deals as investors booked profits in both the stocks after the companies posted better-than-expected numbers for the December quarter. Both the stocks partially erased their losses and ended 1 per cent lower each.
Furthermore, shares of Steel Authority of India dipped 10 per cent to Rs 66.70 on the BSE on Thursday after the government fixed floor price at Rs 64 per share for its 10 per cent stake sale in steel company via offer for sale.
On the upside, Hindustan Aeronautics ended the day 9.5 per cent higher after the government approved procurement of 83 indigenously-developed light combat aircraft 'Tejas' for the Indian Air Force at a cost of Rs 48,000 crore.
In another development, Tata Consumer Products is expected to replace state-run GAIL in the Nifty50 index as part of the semi-annual reshuffle. According to an analysis by ICICI Securities, the free-float market cap — a key parameter for index inclusion—of Tata Consumer Products is currently at Rs 36,000 crore, while that of Gail is about Rs 30,000 crore. If the Tata group firm that operates Starbucks cafes in India gets added to the Nifty index, it will join peers such as Hindustan Unilever, Nestle India and ITC in the blue-chip index.
Meanwhile, on the economic front, the wholesale price-based inflation slowed to 1.22 per cent in December on easing food prices, as per government data released on Thursday.
The inflation based on Wholesale Price Index (WPI) was 1.55 per cent in November 2020, and 2.76 per cent in December 2019.
US Treasuries slipped on Thursday on a report that President-elect Joe Biden will announce a stimulus package as big as $2 trillion, while Japanese stocks surged to a new three-decade peak as investors extended bets on a global growth rebound.
Japan's Nikkei closed up 0.9 per cent at its highest level since August 1990. S&P 500 futures, FTSE futures and EuroSTOXX 50 futures all rose about 0.2 per cent.