But it weakened in mid-afternoon trade on profit booking, before bouncing back again in late trade. The turnover in NSE's derivatives segment hit record high for the third consecutive day.
Shares from auto, pharma and IT sectors were in demand, while cement, banking and capital goods stocks edged lower. Sugar stocks spiked at the fag end of the trading session. Global markets were subdued.
Meanwhile, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Wednesday revised upwards its growth projections for the global economy, citing accelerating growth in China, India and Russia, while the United States appears to be regaining momentum. The IMF's updated World Economic Outlook forecast global growth of 5.2 per cent for both calendar year 2007 and 2008, up from its earlier forecast of 4.9 per cent growth for both years.
The BSE 30-share Sensex rose 76.98 points to 15,776.31. It opened higher at 15,768.28 and jumped to a high of 15,812.27. The index also slipped to a low of 15,654.40 at 13:01 IST . IT pivotals rose on stock-specific buying despite the Indian rupee heading towards a nine-year high yesterday in anticipation of strong capital inflow.
India's second largest software services exporter Infosys Technologies gained 1.81 per cent to Rs 2,026 after it bagged a $250-million (around Rs 1,010 crore) contract from Royal Philips Electronics. It is one of the largest acquisition-cum-outsourcing deal by an Indian information technology firm.
TCS (up 3.13 per cent to Rs 1185), Wipro (up 4.22 per cent to Rs 520) and Satyam Computers (up 1.64 per cent to Rs 494.90) gained in anticipation of further mergers and acquisitions activity in the IT sector. The BSE IT Index gained 1.92 per cent at 5,001.24, and was the top gainer among the sectoral indices on BSE.
In early trade, the rupee was at 40.31/32 per dollar, strengthening from the previous close of 40.3500/3575 and inching towards from a nine-year high of 40.20 hit earlier this week.
India's largest drug manufacturer by sales Ranbaxy Laboratories jumped 9.95 per cent to Rs 375 on 19.34 lakh shares. It was the top gainer from the Sensex pack. The stock rose after Ranbaxy today, 26 July 2007, reached an agreement with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) to end their litigation in the US on Valtrex (valacyclovir hydrochloride tablets) used in the treatment of herpes.
Other pharma stocks Cipla (up 4.16 per cent to Rs 193.90) and Dr Reddy's Laboratories (up 0.29 per cent to Rs 667.40) also edged higher. The BSE Health Care Index was up 1.5 per cent at 3,788.36.
Auto stocks advanced on fresh buying interest in anticipation that sales will pick up after monsoon, generally a slack season. Bajaj Auto (up 1 per cnt to Rs 2378) and Mahindra & Mahindra (up 2.55 per cent to Rs 802) advanced. The BSE Auto Index closed at 5,096.44, up 1.5 per cent.
Maruti Udyog vaulted 3.38 per cent to Rs 837 after Indiaís biggest small car maker today, 26 July 2007, reported a 35.1 per cent growth to Rs499.60 crore in net profit in Q1 June 2007 over Q1 June 2006. Net sales were up 26 per cent at Rs 3,930.82 crore. Maruti Udyog will be renamed as Maruti Suzuki India.
Cement shares declined for the second straight day on fresh selling following reports that the goverment is easing cement import norms in an attempt to rein in prices. Indiaís second largest cement manufacturer ACC plunged 4.55 per cent to Rs 1,021.80 on 3.82 lakh shares. It was the top loser from the Sensex pack.
Ambuja Cements (down 3 per cent to Rs 124.50) and Shree Cement (down 2.86 per cent to Rs 1,280) also slipped.
Cement scrips had fallen on Wednesday following reports that the Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Commission (MRTCP) had on Tuesday, 24 July 2007, ordered a probe into the business practices of 14 leading cement manufacturers.
The country's biggest private sector company Reliance Industries (RIL) advanced 1.92 per cent to Rs 1,940, after striking an all-time high of Rs 1,948. RIL's results are due on Saturday, 28 July 2007. The market expects surprise on the positive side.Capital goods heavyweights Bhel (down 2.05 per cent to Rs 1,753) and L&T (down 1.13 per cent to Rs 2,544.50) declined on profit booking after a recent rally. The BSE Capital Goods index lost 1.35 per cent to 13,247.03, and was the worst performing sectoral index on BSE.
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