Sensex up 66 points; realty stocks surge

The benchmark BSE Sensex was trading above the 29,000-mark by rising over 50 points in morning trade today as participants made selective buying ahead of monthly expiry in the derivatives segment on Thursday and the Union Budget on Saturday.

The 30-share barometer gained 54.83 points or 0.19 per cent to 29,029.94 at 10.38 am.

The index had lost 487.16 points in the previous two sessions.

Sectoral indices led by FMCG, realty, IT, capital goods, consumer durables and healthcare were trading in positive zone with gains up to 1.17 per cent.

On the BSE, market breadth turned negative as stocks that declined outweighed the number of gainers; 969 shares gained while 1,163 shares fell. A total of 113 shares were unchanged.

ITC, Wipro, HUL, L&T and Infosys were the top gainers during the session on the Sensex.

SSLT, Tata Motors, ONGC, Tata Steel and Bharti Airtel were the top losers.

Similarly, the wide-based National Stock Exchange Nifty index edged higher by 14.55 points, or 0.17 per cent, to 8,769.50.

Brokers said fresh buying by investors and covering—up of short positions by speculators in view of February’s month expiry in the derivatives segment on Thursday helped stocks to recover.

Besides, optimism over the Budget on Saturday and a mixed trend at other Asian markets influenced trading sentiments, they added.

Foreign portfolio investors bought shares worth a net Rs 601.91 crore yesterday, according to provisional data. Domestic institutional investors sold shares worth a net Rs 163.79 crore yesterday.

The market may remain volatile this week as traders roll over positions in the futures & options (F&O) segment from the near month February 2015 series to March 2015 series. The February derivatives contracts expire on Thursday.

Asian stocks were trading cautiously ahead of US Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s speech to lawmakers.

Among other Asian markets, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index was down by 0.22 per cent, while Japan’s Nikkei index gained 0.13 per cent in early trade today. The US Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.13 per cent lower yesterday following lacklustre housing data.

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