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Markets score a hat-trick as eco reopening fuels recovery hopes; FMCG, auto stocks spurt

Business Finance

Press Trust of India  |  Mumbai 

Equity indices ticked higher for the third session on the trot on Thursday as investors accumulated FMCG, auto and IT stocks amid gradual reopening of the economy.

After rallying over 370 points intra-day, the 30-share BSE Sensex settled 114.29 points or 0.37 per cent up at 30,932.90.

Similarly, the broader NSE Nifty advanced 39.70 points, or 0.44 per cent, to 9,106.25.

Investors took heart from the gradual resumption of economic activities, including air and rail travel, though the underlying sentiment remains cautious amid the coronavirus pandemic, traders said.

ITC was the top gainer in the Sensex pack, rallying 7.48 per cent, followed by Asian Paints, Hero MotoCorp, Maruti, Bajaj Auto, Sun Pharma, TCS and HCL Tech.

On the other hand, IndusInd Bank, NTPC, Bajaj Finance, HDFC and L&T slipped up to 2.91 per cent.

Buying was seen in frontline stocks of sectors like auto, IT, metals and FMCG as traders took note of gradual opening of the economy, raising hopes of economic recovery, said Narendra Solanki, Head- Equity Research (Fundamental), Anand Rathi.

However, at the fag-end of the session, some selling was witnessed as negative global cues continued for the second straight day and traders booked profits as weekly expiry neared, leading to indices losing majority of the gains, he added.

Concerns over the long-term impact of COVID-19 and worsening China-US relations too kept investors on the edge, traders said.

BSE auto, metal, FMCG, IT, teck, oil and gas, healthcare and energy indices ended up to 2.45 per cent higher, while power, capital goods, finance and bankex finished with losses.

The broader BSE midcap and smallcap indices spurted up to 0.76 per cent.

World equities were on the backfoot as weak macroeconomic data and US-China tensions sapped risk appetite.

Bourses in Shanghai, Hong Kong and Tokyo ended in the red, while Seoul closed with gains.

Stock exchanges in Europe were trading with significant losses in early deals.

International oil benchmark Brent crude futures climbed 1.79 per cent to USD 36.39 per barrel.

On the currency front, the rupee appreciated 19 paise to provisionally close at 75.61 against the US dollar.

The number of COVID-19 cases in India spiked to over 1.12 lakh, while the death toll rose to 3,435, according to the health ministry.

Globally, the number of cases linked to the disease has crossed 49.96 lakh and the death toll has topped 3.28 lakh.

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

First Published: Thu, May 21 2020. 17:08 IST