Key barometers traded near day's high in early afternoon trade. At 12:29 IST, the barometer index, the S&P BSE Sensex, jumped 1368.23 points or 4.79% at 29,904.01. The Nifty 50 index was up 367.15 points or 4.41% at 8,685.
Sentiment was bullish after the US Senate passed a $2 trillion Coronavirus disaster aid bill that is the largest economic stimulus in the history of United States.
Meanwhile, the Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will be addressing media at 1 pm today. This will be the second media briefing by the finance minister within a week.
The broader market was trading firm. The S&P BSE Mid-Cap index was up 3.66% while the S&P BSE Small-Cap index was up 4.23%.
The market breadth was strong. On the BSE, 1478 shares rose and 541 shares fell. A total of 152 shares were unchanged. In Nifty 50 index, 40 stocks advanced while 10 stocks declined.
Trading was volatile as traders roll over positions in the F&O segment from the near month March series to April series. The March 2020 F&O contracts expire today, 26 March 2020.
The NSE's India VIX, a gauge of market's expectation of volatility over the near term, fell 6.46% to 72.6075.
The Nifty March 2020 futures were trading at 8,648.25, a discount 39.45 points compared with the spot at 8,687.70.
On the options front, the Nifty option chain for 26 March 2020 expiry showed maximum call open interest (OI) of 32.58 lakh contracts at the 9,000 strike price. Maximum put OI of 23.81 lakh contracts was seen at 8,000 strike price.
Stocks in Spotlight:
Caplin Point Laboratories surged 11.36% to Rs 227 after the company said it received final approval from the US drug regulator for Verapamil Hydrochloride injection. Verapamil Hydrochloride is a calcium channel blocker used in the treatment of cardiac conditions such as high blood pressure, arrhythmias and angina. According to IQVIA (IMS Health), Verapamil Hydrochloride injection USP had US sales data of approximately $28 million for the 12-month period ending December 2019.
Blue Star fell 1.88% to Rs 519.70 after the company said it has temporarily suspended its operations at its various offices and manufacturing plants. The company said it has temporarily suspended its operations at its various offices and manufacturing plants. Most of the office based staff are working from home and are available over their mobile phones and e-mail. Customers, channel partners and vendors are being kept informed, the company said
IRCTC was locked in an upper circuit of 5% at Rs 856.35, snapping its eight days losing streak. The stock lost 33.59% in the past eight trading sessions. The outbreak of COVID-19 has made travellers reconsider going on vacation in this middle of a global pandemic, putting pressure on travel and tourism industry.
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