Equities end green, key index still below 10,000


Mumbai : After two successive days of losses, Indian equities markets Friday posted thin gains on short covering and a key index closed with a rise of about 230 points but still remained below the psychologically important 10,000 mark.

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The 30-share benchmark sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) finished Friday at 9,964.29, up 230.07 points or 2.36 percent from its previous close at 9,734.22 points.

The Sensex opened at 9,631.59 points, the intra-day low, down 102.63 points or 1.1 percent from its previous close Thursday but then climbed to an intra-day high of 10,065.37, briefly breaching the psychologically important 10,000 mark, before dipping again to its closing value.

After shedding nearly 1,000 points in the last two trading sessions, Friday’s bounce back on short covering was expected, analysts said.

The broader-based 50-share S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) also showed a similar trend and closed at 2,973.00, up 80.35 points or 2.78 percent from its previous closing at 2,892.65 points.

The BSE midcap index finished at 3,355.38, up 36.97 points or 1.11 percent from its previous close at 3,318.41 points.

The BSE smallcap index closed at 3,900.10, up 19.83 points or 0.51 percent from its previous close at 3,880.27.

Markets opened weak on global cues as the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq had closed Thursday down 5.73 percent and 4.34 percent respectively.

Asian markets, however, showed a mixed trend Friday with Nikkei, key index of the Tokyo Stock Exchange closing 3.55 percent down while the Hang Seng, key index of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, finished with a gain of 3.29 percent.

At the close, all 13 sectoral indices showed gains with power, oil and gas, metal and public sector stocks posted the biggest gains.

Of the 30 stocks that make up the Sensex, only five ended with losses. The biggest loser was Mahindra and Mahindra, down 1.83 percent, followed by ICICI Bank, down 0.67 percent, Maruti Suzuki, down 0.38 percent and Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), shedding 0.29 percent.

Reliance Infrastructure led the gainers with a rise of 10.92 percent, followed by Hindalco Industries, up 6.61 percent, Reliance Communication, up 5.53 percent, and TCS Ltd. up 4.87 percent.

Some 1,417 stocks or 54.17 percent advanced, 1,124 stocks or 42.97 percent declined and 75 stocks or 2.87 percent remained unchanged.

The market sentiment remains weak and nervous and Friday’s gains were mostly on short covering by those who had been going short over the past two trading sessions, analysts said.