Mumbai, Oct 12 (PTI) Equity benchmarks pared early gains but managed to end modestly higher on Monday after the finance minister announced fresh stimulus measures to revive festive demand and boost the economy.
After rallying nearly 400 points in the morning, the 30-share BSE Sensex buckled under selling pressure in afternoon trade, before ending 84.31 points or 0.21 per cent higher at 40,593.80.
Similarly, the NSE Nifty rose 16.75 points or 0.14 per cent to close at 11,930.95.
Both the key indices have extended their winning streak to eight sessions.
In a bid to stimulate consumer demand during the festival season and boost the economy, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Monday announced payment of cash in lieu of LTC and Rs 10,000 festival advance to government employees.
She also announced additional capital spending and Rs 12,000 crore, 50-year interest-free loan to states to boost the economy that has been battered by the pandemic and the resulting lockdowns.
ITC was the top gainer in the Sensex pack, spurting 2.59 per cent, followed by Infosys, Asian Paints, HCL Tech, PowerGrid, Maruti, TCS and ICICI Bank.
On the other hand, Bharti Airtel, ONGC, HDFC Bank, IndusInd Bank and Bajaj Auto were among the main laggards, shedding up to 2.33 per cent.
Traders said benchmark indices traded with a positive bias through the day, but market participants turned cautious after the finance minister's press conference to announce the stimulus measures.
According to Arjun Yash Mahajan, Head Institutional Business at Reliance Securities, the government's effort to stimulate consumers demand by offering advances and cash voucher schemes looks to be short-term in nature and lacks commitment to have a sustainable growth.
'This may lead to a kind of destocking led demand improvement ahead of festivals or fiscal end. However, it may not necessarily result in a sustainable recovery. This may not entice the market,' he said.
However, he added that higher capital spending bodes well for infrastructure companies as this may result in sharp improvement in new orders as well as pick up infra development works.
BSE IT, teck, healthcare and FMCG indices ended up to 1.48 per cent higher, while metal, telecom, basic materials, oil and gas, realty, auto and utilities tumbled up to 3.68 per cent.
Broader BSE midcap and smallcap indices lost as much as 0.48 per cent.
Meanwhile, operations at BSE and NSE were unaffected following a major power outage in large parts of Mumbai.
On the global front, bourses in Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seoul ended on a positive note, while Tokyo closed in the red.
Stock exchanges in Europe were largely trading with gains in early deals.
International oil benchmark Brent crude was trading 1.38 per cent lower at USD 42.26 per barrel.
In the forex market, the rupee snapped its three-session winning run, slipping 12 paise to close at 73.28 against the US dollar. PTI ANS ABM ANS ABM ABM