Sensex ends above 20,000-mark, banking stocks rally

Mumbai, July 18 (IANS) A benchmark index of Indian equities markets Thursday closed 180 points higher, riding on banking stocks.

All the sectors ended in green. The rally was led by banking index (bankex), capital goods, oil and gas and consumer durables sectors.

The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 19,999.51 points, closed at 20,128.41 points, up 179.68 points or 0.90 percent from the previous day's close at 19,948.73 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 20,176.90 points and a low of 19,956.20 points intra-day.

The wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) ended 1.08 percent or 64.75 points up at 6,038.05 points.

The S&P BSE bankex surged 255.17 points, capital goods went up by 139.53 points, oil and gas increased by 117.35 points and consumer durables moved up by 108.64 points.

The major Sensex gainers were: ONGC, up 4.42 percent at Rs.314.05; HDFC Bank, up 3.22 percent at Rs.684.00; Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited, up 3.14 percent at Rs.188.90; and Hindalco Industries, up 2.35 percent at Rs.104.35.

The major losers were: Mahindra & Mahindra, down 1.88 percent at Rs.875.85; Sterlite Industries, down 1.73 percent at Rs.85.35; NTPC, down 0.95 percent at Rs.146.30; and Tata Consultancy Services, down 0.82 percent at Rs.1,660.15.

Among the Asian markets, Japan's Nikkei went up by 1.32 percent; while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was down by 0.12 percent. The South Korean KOSPI was up by 0.64 percent while China's Shanghai Composite Index was down by 1.05 percent.

In Europe, London's FTSE 100 was trading 0.32 percent up; French CAC 40 Index was up by 0.14 percent, while Germany's DAX Index was down by 0.08 percent.

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