Markets open marginally higher; banking stocks subdued

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 Markets open marginally higher; banking stocks subdued
Markets opened the day higher ahead of the Christmas holiday with the Sensex opening higher by 34 points, while the Nifty gained 10 points in early trade. Strong overnight closings in the US, following a record closing for the S&P and Dow Jones helped boost sentiments.

Among the top gainers from the Sensex was Ultratech Cement, which rallied more then 1 per cent, following the CCI approval for buying the Jaypee cement unit.

Banking sector stocks were trading lower with HDFC Bank, Canara Bank, Kotak and Union Bank of India among the early losers.

Among the top gainers in trade today were Larsen and Toubro and Bharat Heavy Electricals. Infosys, which had declined sharply by 2 per cent, on Monday, following the exit of V Balakrishnan from the company gained ground in trade.

Andhra Bank continued to rally in trade after the company allotted 3 crore shares to govt on preferential basis at Rs 66.59/sh, which was at a premium to Monday's close.

Hindustan Construction was higher after the company received a healthy order. Apollo Tyres, which has had a splendid rally in the last few trading sessions, was once again among the top gainers from the mid cap space jumping almost 3 per cent.

Among the top Nifty losers in trade were Sesa Sterlite, Tata Motors, Tata Power and Jindal Steel. Meanwhile, markets in Asia were trading higher led by strong gains in the Japanese Nikkei and the Hong Kong's Hang Sang.

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