Mumbai: Fag-end buying in select state-owned banks and auto shares helped the benchmark Nifty to stage a smart rebound and close above the key 7,200-mark in a highly volatile trade. The market gained for third consecutive session today on the back of hectic short-covering and bargain hunting ahead of key events next week including F&O expiry and Union Budget despite all macroeconomic uncertainty. FIIs had turned net buyers after recent intense selling also supported the recovery momentum.

Equities got off to a shaky start tracking weak US closing overnight and tapid Asian cures as investors booked profits after two-day rally. It largely traded rangebound in the absence of definite cues before staging a rebound toward to tail-end session as retail investors lapped up shares in beaten down counters, particularly in state-run banking stocks.

Modest recovery in European stocks also supported investor sentiment. Foreign institutional investors bought shares t buyers in equities to the tune of Rs 419 crore on Thursday, as per provisional stock exchange data.

Elsewhere, barring Kopsi, all major bourses ended in negative zone with Japan’s Nikkei indices tumbling over 1.42 per cent. European stocks traded mixed in early trade. The 50-share Nifty opened weak at 7,170.85 and swung between a high of 7,226.85 and a low of 7.145.95 before ending at 7,210.75, revealing a modest gain of 19 points, or 0.26 per cent.

On the sectoral front, PSU Bank outperformed the benchmark index, rallying by over 2.58 per cent alongwith other key indices auto, technology, infra, bank Nifty, metal and realty, while healthcare, energy and FMCG witnessed modest profit-taking.

However, the broader market benchmark ended mixed. The biggest gainers included SBI, ICICI Bank, Bosch, Heromotoco, Tata Motors, Asian Paints, M&M, Reliance, Infosys, Bajaj Auto, TechM, Bharti Artel, Ultracemco, NTPC and Wipro.

HDFC, Maruti, Axis Bank, BPCL, Sun Pharma, Dr Reddys’, ITC, Kotak Bank, Coal India, Indusind, Adani Ports and BHEL. Turnover in cash segment dropped to Rs 12,602.03 crore from Rs 15,895.41 crore yesterday.

A total of 7,038.52 lakh shares changed hands in 68,14,806 trades. The market capitalisation of NSE stood at Rs 86,95,214 crore.

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