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Sensex extends gains ahead of Fed decision, rises 174 pts


Mumbai :  Indian shares ended in the green for a third straight session as the benchmark BSE Sensex rose by 173.93 points to end at over a one-week high of 25,494.37 on gains in energy stocks amid a firming trend in global market ahead of the outcome of a Federal Reserve meeting.

Buying activity gathered momentum as investors felt markets have by now factored in an expected US rate hike.

The Federal Reserve is expected to announce a hike in interest rates, first in nearly a decade, when its two-day policy-setting meet ends later in the day.

The 30-share Sensex resumed higher at 25,402.47 and continued to rise to touch day’s high of 25,572.90.

It finally settled 173.93 points or 0.69 per cent higher at 25,494.37, its highest closing since December 7. The gauge had gained over 276 points in the past two sessions.

The NSE Nifty after moving between 7,776.60 and 7,715.75, ended 50.00 points or 0.65 per cent higher at 7,750.90.

ONGC topped the gainers list among BSE stocks by surging 3.90 per cent to Rs 226.55 while RIL closed 0.22 per cent up at almost three-week high of Rs 978 as global crude rebounded from a six-year low.

Other major gainers were Bharti Airtel, ICICI Bank, NTPC, Lupin, Infosys, BHEL, Hero MotoCorp, TCS, Coal India, Sun Pharma, HDFC, SBI, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank and Bajaj Auto.

M&M, however, emerged as the top loser with a fall of 5.44 per cent on concern the company’s sales will be hit after the Supreme Court banned registration of diesel-run SUVs and cars having engine capacity beyond 2,000cc in Delhi and National Capital Region till March 31.

Other losers were ITC, Wipro, HUL, Hindalco, Cipla and Maruti Suzuki ended lower.

Sectorally, the BSE oil&gas index gained the most by rising 1.71 per cent followed by infra 1.51 per cent, PSU 1.33 per cent, power 1.30 per cent and banking 1.16 per cent.

Broader markets too continued to perform well with the mid-cap index rising 0.35 per cent and small-cap gaining 0.24 per cent.

Overseas, most Asian markets closed higher and European indexes were in a better shape before the much-awaited Federal Reserve interest rate decision.

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