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Sensex closes higher; Reliance rallies again

Sensex closes higher; Reliance rallies again
The Sensex and the Nifty gained for a second day in a row on strong closings across Asia. The Sensex ended the day with gains of 74 points (provisional), while the Nifty closed the day with gains of 30.95 points. Among the top gainers in trade were heavyweights including ITC, Reliance and HDFC Bank.

Hindustan Unilever which had gained as much as 7 per cent in early trade, following a hike in stake by parent company Unilever shed most of its gains to close just 1 per cent higher.

Ranbaxy continued to gain after falling to 52-week earlier in June following a sustained rally in the last few days.

PSU banking stocks which were hammered out of shape in the last few weeks saw some buying support and short covering. Bank of Baroda, Punjab National Bank and Andhra Bank were among the gainers.

Real estate stocks also saw buying support with Sobha gaining on a strong set of results. Oberoi Realty and Indiabulls Realty were the other gainers in trade.

Private sector banking names had a mixed day in trade today with Axis Bank gaining, while ICICI Bank continued to shed gains.

Among non index stocks Gammon India gained after its debt recast was approved by lenders. Firstsource also rallied after reports that investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala had picked a stake in the company.

Meanwhile, markets across Asia ended the day higher with the Japanese Nikkei ending with gains of 2%, while the Hong Kong's Hang Sang closed higher by 1.86%.

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