Sensex rallies 1,628 pts; Nifty ends at 8,745

Sensex rallies 1,628 pts; Nifty ends at 8,745

MUMBAI [Maha Media]: Indian equity markets jumped, in line with their global peers, on Friday, lifted by across-the-board bargain buying, especially in index heavyweights like Reliance Industries and HDFC. However, weakness in HDFC Bank capped the gains.

ONGC (up 16%), IT stocks like HCL Tech and TCS (both up 11%), and Reliance Industries (up 9%)  contributed to Sensex's over 2,000-point upmove to 30,380 levels. However, the index pared some of the gains in the final hour of the session and was hovering around 29,730 levels, up 1,440 points. HDFC Bank (down 4 per cent) remained a drag on the index. The Nifty50 index also shot up to 8,790 levels but climbed off the highs to trade around 8,640 levels, up 370 points.

The Nifty sectoral indices were trading largely in the green.  Nifty IT index, up over 8 per cent, gained the most. Besides, Nifty FMCG index was up 5 per cent and Nifty Metal index 4 per cent. Nifty Bank index recovered over 1,000 off intra-day lows.

In broader markets, the S&P BSE MidCap was up 561 points, or 5.25 per cent, and the S&P BSE SmallCap traded 450 points, or 4.64 per cent, higher.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday announced setting up of a task force under Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman which will take necessary actions "in the near future" after analysing the coronavirus pandemic situation.

According to government sources, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will hold a meeting with MSME Minister Nitin Gadkari, Animal Husbandry Minister Giriraj Singh, Civil Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri and Tourism Minister Prahlad Singh Patel on Friday to assess the situation in order to work out a package.

Calling for "resolve and restraint" to fight coronavirus, Modi asked the entire country to observe 'Janta curfew' on Sunday.

In a nearly 30-minute national broadcast, he asked people to stay indoors and work from home as much as possible while underscoring the dangers of coronavirus, saying the world has never seen a crisis as grave as this.

The novel coronavirus cases in India rose to 195 on Friday after 22 fresh cases were reported from various parts of the country, according to the Health Ministry data.

Globally, the death toll from the virus has risen to over 9,800 with more than 232,650 cases in 158 countries and territories.

"The PM had set the stage for more action to follow. The Covid- 19 Task Force under the FM's leadership can be expected to come out with concrete proposals very soon," said V K Vijayakumar, Chief Investment Strategist at Geojit Financial Services.

The huge oil bounty from the crude crash can be used for this, he said adding that PM's appeal is a curtain raiser for the concrete actions to follow soon.

World over, market sentiments improved as governments stepped up measures to cushion the financial blow of the pandemic, analysts said, adding that concerns over the rapid spread of the virus remained.

Bourses in Shanghai, Hong Kong, Seoul jumped up to 4 per cent, while Tokyo was in the red.

Stock exchanges on Wall Street too ended on a positive note.

Meanwhile, the rupee too appreciated 37 paise to 74.74 against US dollar in morning session.

Global oil benchmark, Brent crude futures rose over 2.04 per cent to USD 29.05 per barrel.

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