Mumbai, Feb 21: Benchmark indices started on a positive note Thursday tracking gains on banking counters, after the government announced infusion Rs 48,239 crore in 12 public sector banks, buying by foreign and domestic institutional investors, and positive global cues. The 30-share index was trading 8.47 points, or 0.02 per cent, at 35,764.73. Similarly, the 50-share NSE Nifty was trading 6.05 points, or 0.06 per cent, higher at 10,741.50.
The Sensex had settled at 35,756.26, up 403.65 points, or 1.14 per cent in the previous session, while the broader NSE Nifty soared 131.10 points, or 1.24 per cent, to 10,735.45. Top gainers in the Sensex pack on Thursday include ICICI Bank, Vedanta, ONGC, SBI, HUL, Bajaj Finance, Tata Motors, Sun Pharma, HUL and Axis Bank, rising up to 2.23 per cent. On the other hand, Infosys, Yes Bank, Bharti Airtel, M&M, Coal India and HDFC Bank fell up to 1.28 per cent.
According to traders, public sector bank stocks rose after the finance ministry on Wednesday announced infusion of Rs 48,239 crore in 12 public sector banks (PSBs) in this fiscal to help them maintain regulatory capital requirements and finance growth plans. Besides, investor sentiment was also positive on buying by domestic institutional investors (DIIs) and foreign institutional investors (FIIs).
On a net basis, DIIs were net buyers to the tune of Rs 113.27 crore, and FIIs also bought shares worth a net of Rs 713.47 crore on Wednesday, provisional data available with BSE showed. Investors also took cues from other Asian equities that were trading positive after the US Federal Reserve minutes affirmed that the central bank would be patient on interest rate hikes, amid anticipation of a resolution to US-China trade tiff.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.54 per cent, Kospi rose 0.05 per cent, and Japan's Nikkei gained 0.35 per cent; while Shanghai Composite Index was trading 0.36 per cent in early trade. On Wall Street, Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.24 per cent higher at 25,954.44 points on Wednesday. The benchmark Brent crude futures rose 0.21 per cent to USD 67.22 per barrel. Meanwhile, the rupee appreciated to 71.02 against the US dollar in early session.