BSE Sensex briefly crosses 6,000 in mahurat trading

BSE Sensex briefly crosses 6,000 in mahurat trading

Indian shares ended with modest gains in a truncated special session on Friday, but briefly crossed the psychologically important 6,000 mark early in festival inspired trading, brokers said.

Select technology, drug and automobile stocks lifted the index, but power and some metal stocks kept a lid on gains.

The 30-issue Bombay share index closed up 0.16 percent at 5,964.01 points, after rising to 6,001.99 in opening deals. The index last traded above 6,000 on Feb. 19.

The BSE Sensex has risen about 5.0 percent in November, and is up more than a third from a seven-month low struck in mid-May.

Foreign funds helped that rally as inflows have revived after a slowdown in May, when a surprise victory for the Congress-led government raised doubts about the continuity of economic reforms, hugely popular with investors.

Overseas investors have pumped in a net $407.2 million into Indian shares so far in November, after net inflows of $875.9 million in the previous month.

They have added local shares worth $6.18 billion to their portfolios this year so far, after a record inflow of $6.6 billion last year.

The 75-minute truncated trading session, held to mark the beginning of the Hindu New Year, recorded volume of 63 million shares, compared with an average daily volume of about 140 million in five-and-half-hours of regular trade.

Gainers outpaced losers by about three to one, reflecting the market's bullish undertone.

Technology stocks, which fell broadly on profit taking the previous day, rebounded on hopes of strong business growth.

Bellwether Infosys Technologies Ltd., the nation's No. 2 software services exporter, gained 0.4 percent at 2,025.45 rupees and Satyam Computer Services Ltd., the fourth-biggest exporter, rose 0.6 percent to 404.60 rupees.

Power stocks fell on profit-taking after their rally in the run-up to the listing of India's biggest power producer, National Thermal Power Corporation Ltd., earlier this month.

Reliance Energy Ltd. fell 0.5 percent to 634.30 rupees and Tata Power Company Ltd. shed 1.1 percent to 318.50 rupees.

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