Snapping its two-day fall, the BSE Sensex today recovered over 29 points in highly volatile trade as investors targeted bluechips ahead of monthly derivatives expiry and the Union Budget on Saturday.
After opening in the positive territory on covering-up of short positions by speculators before monthly expiry on Thursday and optimistic buying by investors ahead of the Budget, the 3-share index slipped into the red and touched a low of 28,875.94 intra-day on profit-booking.
However, the Sensex bounced back to close higher by 29.55 points, or 0.10 per cent, at 29,004.66. Intra-day, it touched a high of 29,130.67.
The gauge had lost 487.16 points in the previous two sessions after investors locked-in gains after recent gains.
The 50-share Nifty of the National Stock Exchange also recovered by 7.15 points, or 0.08 per cent, to close at 8,762.10 after shuttling between 8,800.50 and 8,726.75.
Meanwhile, Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares worth Rs 601.91 crore yesterday, as per provisional data released by the stock exchanges.
Brokers said pre-budget buying by participants in FMCG, capital goods, realty, IT, infrastructure and healthcare sector stocks on hopes of growth-oriented measures in the upcoming Budget, bettered the sentiments, helping the key indices to close in positive zone, though with minor upside adjustments.
Furthermore, covering-up of short positions in selective stocks in view of Thursday’s monthly expiry in the derivatives segment also positively impacted sentiments, they said.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will table the first full budget of the Narendra Modi Government on February 28.
Hind Unilever remained buyers’ fancy for yet another session and gained the most by surging 3.15 per cent to Rs 913.95.
ITC Ltd emerged second most gainers and ended 1.37 per cent higher at Rs 395.50 after company has won the bid to acquire Park Hyatt Hotel property in Goa.
Other prominent gainers were L&T (2.03 pc), BHEL (1.78 pc), Cipla (1.23 pc), GAIL (1.19 pc), Maruti Suzuki (1.09 pc), Wipro (0.52 pc), Axis Bank (0.38 pc) and Infosys (0.33 pc).
Laggards were Sesa Sterlite, ONGC, Tata Steel, Tata Motors, RIL, Bharti Airtel, Tata Power, ICICI Bank, Hindalco, M&M, Dr Reddy, HDFC Ltd and SBI that slumped upto 3.49 per cent.
In the 30-Sensex constituents, 17 ended higher, while 13 remained in the negative terrain.
Sectorwise, the BSE FMCG index gained the most by surging 1.45 per cent, followed by Capital Goods 1.09 per cent and Realty index by 0.56 per cent.