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Sensex jumps 133 points

Markets ignore rising food inflation

MUMBAI: Ignoring rising food inflation, the Bombay Stock Exchange benchmark index, Sensex, on Thursday jumped by 133 points to close at a 31-month high on persistent foreign institutional investment (FII) inflows, with financial stocks registering most of the gains.

Rising for the fourth session in a row, the BSE 30-share index closed with a gain of 132.95 points at 18799.66, its best close since January 18, 2008, when it settled at 19013.70. The wide-based 50-share Nifty index of the National Stock Exchange improved by 0.57 per cent to finish at 5640.05.

“Markets are doing well on the back of relentless inflow from overseas fund houses, which are bullish on India's growth story,” Unicon Financial CEO Gajendra Nagpal said.

On a weekly basis, the Sensex recorded a gain of 3.17 per cent. Despite mixed cues from global peers, Indian markets traded with a positive bias throughout the week.

Stock markets will remain closed on Friday on account of Eid-ul-Fitr festival.

“Indian stock markets have so far displayed resilience to news flow pertaining to the global economic slowdown and sovereign debt concerns,” brokerage house Reliance Securities said in a note. “However, there is a possibility of heightened volatility that may creep into domestic markets in these uncertain global times,” it added. Barring oil & gas and pharma, all the sectoral indices on the BSE ended in the green, with financial, consumer goods and PSU stocks leading the gains.

It was another day when banking heavyweights like SBI, HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank led from the front. SBI zoomed 3 per cent to Rs.2,982.50, HDFC Bank 2.67 per cent to Rs.2,240.45 and ICICI Bank 1.48 per cent to Rs.1,050.75.

With a jump of 3.16 per cent to Rs.655.40, M&M was the top gainer in the Sensex pack. L&T rose nearly 1 per cent to Rs.1,882.75 and DLF 1.29 per cent to Rs.321.85.

“Investors are confident that in the coming period, inflation will come down as the monsoon has been good,” Mr. Nagpal added.

Food inflation increased to 11.47 per cent for the week ended August 28, rising for the second consecutive week, fuelling speculation that the Reserve Bank of India would hike policy rates at its meeting on September 16. — PTI

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