Sensex ends 111 points up, ONGC gains 9 percent


Mumbai : A benchmark index for Indian equities Thursday ended trade with modest gains, backed by a surge in blue-chip stock ONGC and increased interest in leading banks.

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The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 16,419.1 points, closed at 16,519.68 points, 111.19 points or 0.68 percent up from its previous close at 16,408.49 points.

At the National Stock Exchange (NSE), the broader 50-share S&P CNX Nifty ended at 4,947.6 points, up 0.57 percent from its previous close.

Broader markets, however, closed in a slump, with the BSE midcap index ending 0.05 percent up and the BSE smallcap index 0.55 percent lower.

Realty scrips faced bulk of the selling pressure. Auto and consumer durable scrips too witnessed selling.

However, PSU and energy stocks saw buying. ONGC’s scrip soared 8.72 percent at Rs.1,118.20 after the government doubled the rate at which natural gas is marketed by the state-owned exploration majors, bringing it almost at par with the $4.2 per unit charged by Reliance Industries for the gas from the Krishna Godavari basin.

The market reaction to telecom stocks was mixed a day after the 3G auctions concluded.

Major gainers on the 30-scrip Sensex were Sterlite Industries, up 2.35 percent at Rs.652.45; SBI, up 2.19 percent at Rs.2,263.40; and Reliance Infra, up 1.97 percent at Rs.984.70.

Prominent losers included Jaiprakash Associates, down 3.28 percent at Rs.116.65; DLF, down 2.81 percent at Rs.271.05; Grasim Industries, down 2.45 percent at Rs.2,513.50; and Maruti Suzuki, down 1.6 percent at Rs.1,210.45.

Earlier, trade was volatile at Asian bourses with stocks rising during the day and profit booking pulling them down towards the end.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng shut shop 0.17 percent lower at 19,545.83 points, while the Chinese Shanghai Composite index closed 1.23 percent lower at 2,55594 points.

The Japanese Nikkei ended 1.54 percent down at 10,030.31 points. The South Korean Kospi closed 1.83 percent lower at 1,600.18 points.

European traders chose to sell on concerns that other European countries may follow Germany’s lead in banning short selling in some financial instruments.

Britain’s key index FTSE 100 was ruling 0.9 percent lower at 5,111.67 points.

The French CAC 40 too was trading 1.32 percent down at 3,465.48 points and the German DAX was at 5,910.1 points, down 1.31 percent.