Photographs: Reuters SI Reporter in Mumbai
After remaining rangebound for most part of the trading session benchmark share indices surged in late trades to end near their day's with IT majors leading the gains.
The 30-share Sensex ended up 89 points at 20,723 after touching an intra-day high of 20,751 and the 50-share Nifty ended up 26 points to close at 6,153 after touching a high of 6,160.
Asian stocks ended mixed with profit taking seen in Japanese shares after recent gains.
The Nikkei ended down 0.5% after rising nearly 3% on Tuesday. Hong Kong's Hang Seng ended up 0.3% and the Shanghai Composite rebounded from its day's lows to end at its highest level in two months to end up 1% led by banks and energy shares while Straits Times gained 0.5%.
European shares pared early gains and were trading mixed. Shares had opened higher led by PSA Peugeot Citreon after the auto major announced a partnership with a Chinese competitor. The CAC and DAX were down 0.1-0.2% while FTSE was up 0.1%.
Defensive shares were among the top Sensex gainers. Infosys, TCS and Wipro were up 1.4-2.1% each. Sun Pharma gained 2%.
Ranbaxy Labs ended up 3% amid media reports that the troubled drug major along with its rival Israeli Teva pharmaceutical are set to settle a case in the United States alleging signing an unlawful agreement to stall competition.
Meanwhile, capital goods were up after the excise duty was cut by 2% to 10% to stimulate growth. L&T and BHEL were up 0.6-1% each. ABB ended up 2% after its net profit jumped 3.47 times to Rs 59 crore for the fourth quarter ended December 2013 compared to Rs 17 crore in the corresponding quarter last year.
Auto shares witnessed profit taking after recent gains. M&M, Maruti, Hero MotoCorp and Bajaj Auto were down 0.6-1.5% each.
Metal shares which had recently firmed up on demand from China and higher global prices also witnessed profit taking. Sesa Sterlite, Tata Steel, Hindalco were down 0.4-1.8% each.
Consumer durable shares were in the limelight on hopes that manufacturers would pass on lower excise duty benefits to consumers thereby spurring demand. PC Jeweller, Titan, Whirlpool, VIP Industries, Blue Star, Gitanjali Gems and Bajaj Electricals ended up 2-4% each.
Sugar stocks ended 5-9% higher following a PTI reports which suggests that, the country’s sugar output fell over 13% to 14.4 million tonnes (mt) so far this year on delayed crushing.
Among other shares, Paper Products gained nearly 3% to end at Rs 79 after reporting a strong 66% year-on-year (yoy) jump in consolidated net profit at Rs 16.66 crore for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2013 (Q4), mainly on account of Rs 7.05 crore gain on sale of office property in Mumbai. The company had profit of Rs 10 crore in the same quarter year ago.
Force Motors has soared 7%, extending its past two day’s rally on BSE, after promoter’s increased their stake in the company to 56.54% from 51.75% earlier. On February 17, 2014 Jaya Hind Investments Private Limited and others have acquired 631,139 equity shares of Rs 10 each on “Spot Delivery Basis” from twelve members of the company, Force Motors said in a statement.
Monsanto India has surged over 4% to end at Rs 1,251, extending its month-long rally, on back of heavy volumes. A combined 232,800 shares changed hands on the counter, against an average sub 100,000 shares that were traded daily in past two weeks on the BSE and NSE.
HMT has rallied 8.6% to end at Rs 29.65, extending its previous day’s over 7% surge after the company said the government approved the revival and restructuring package of Rs 1,083 crore.
The BSE Mid-cap and Small-cap indices were up 0.5-0.7% each.
Market breadth was strong with 1,462 gainers and 1,213 losers on the BSE.