Sensex rises for 8th session, ends marginally higher

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Mumbai, March 20:
Continuing its upward journey for the eighth consecutive session, market benchmark BSE Sensex ended marginally higher on Wednesday, following gains in Infosys, HDFC twins and L&T amid uninterrupted capital inflows by foreign funds. However, gains were capped tracking weakness in Asian shares that slipped from six-month highs after a lackluster session as investors took profits ahead of a policy decision by the US Federal Reserve amid a report of US concerns that China is pushing back against American demands in trade talks. The 30-share index began the session on a firm note at 38,433.86 and rallied to hit the session’s high of 38,489.81 on steady inflow of buying by foreign funds as well as retail investors. However, emergence of profit-booking and losses in select heavy weight stocks on expiry of March series derivative contracts, the index turned negative and hit a low of 38,316.21 before returning in positive terrain to close the day higher by 23.28 points, or 0.06 per cent, to 38,386.75. The barometer had rallied about 1,500 points in the previous seven sessions. The broader NSE Nifty, however, ended 11.35 points, or 0.10 per cent lower at 11,521.05 after shuttling between 11,556.10 and 11,503.10 during the session. Markets will remain closed on Thursday on account of Holi. Stocks of software exporters were centre of brisk activity after the rupee slipped below the 69 mark against the dollar. Software exporters’ majority of revenues come in dollar. On a net basis, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) bought shares worth Rs 2,132.36 crore Tuesday, while domestic institutional investors (DIIs) sold shares worth Rs 1,253.67 crore, provisional data showed.

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