The Indian benchmark indices ended tad higher on Tuesday, led by gains in rate sensitive financial and realty stocks, tracking a positive trend across Asia markets after Fed Chair Janet Yellen reiterated her pledge to hike borrowing costs in the world"s biggest economy only gradually, bolstering risk taking appetite.
Back home, the Reserve Bank of India kept key interest rates unchanged in its second bi-monthly monetary policy, in line with market expectations.
Extending previous session rally, the BSE SENSEX closed at 27009.67, up by 232.22 points or by 0.87 per cent, and the NSE Nifty ended at 8266.45, up by 65.4 points or by 0.8 per cent.
In the bullish trade, the BSE Sensex touched intraday high of 27082.63 and intraday low of 26829.53, while the NSE Nifty touched intraday high of 8294.95 and intraday low of 8216.4. The RBI waited to see the impact of its recent monetary easing moves and monitors the progress of the monsoon rains for cues over near-term inflationary trend in Asia"s third biggest economy.
The central bank kept the repo rate unchanged at 6.5 per cent after cutting it by 25 basis points in its April meeting, taking the total reduction over the past 18 months to 150 basis points.
In line with benchmark indices, the BSE MIDCAP closed at 11417.06, up by 32.92 points or by 0.29 per cent, while the BSE SMLCAP settled at 11280.67, up by 107.75 points or by 0.96 per cent.
The top gainers of the BSE Sensex pack were State Bank of India (Rs. 209.80,+5.40%), ICICI Bank Ltd. (Rs. 253.85,+4.31%), ITC Ltd. (Rs. 362.80,+1.97%), Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (Rs. 738.80,+1.77%), Hindustan Unilever Ltd. (Rs. 893.00,+1.59%), among others.
Meanwhile, Infosys Ltd. (Rs. 1257.20,-0.78%), Reliance Industries Ltd. (Rs. 954.65,-0.13%), Housing Development Finance Corporation Ltd. (Rs. 1250.45,-0.10%), GAIL (India) Ltd. (Rs. 374.45,-0.07%), Dr. Reddy's Laboratories Ltd. (Rs. 3151.00,-0.03%), were among top losers on BSE.
On the sectoral front, rate sensitive stocks, such as bank and realty, emerged as top gainers, adding as much as 1.7 per cent and 1.63 per cent respectively.
The Market breadth, indicating the overall strength of the market, was strong. On BSE out of total shares traded 2956, shares advanced were 1579 while 1192 shares declined and 185 were unchanged.
On the global front, all the Asian stocks ended in green, with markets in Hong Kong led the rally, as Yellen signaled that gradual interest rate tightening remains appropriate even though she stopped short of providing the precise timing for raising interest rates further, potentially putting a June rate hike off the table.
China"s Shanghai Composite settled with modest gain, Hang Seng jumped 1 per cent while Japan"s Nikkei 225 climbed as investors weighed Yellen"s speech and as a weaker yen bolstered the lure for exporter stocks.
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