The Indian stock market ended on a positive note on Wednesday, extending gains to a second successive day, as traders covered some short positions ahead of near month derivatives expiry.
Global cues were mixed. While Asian markets closed mostly higher, major European markets got off to a subdued start. Though stocks started off on a bright note, and shrugged off a subsequent setback to edge higher again, faced resistance later on in the session as the mood remained cautious amid concerns about near term liquidity.
The BSE benchmark Sensex ended the session with a gain of 91.03 points or 0.35% at 26,051.81, while the Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange ended up 31 points or 0.39% at 8033.30.
In the forex market, the rupee was trading at 68.49 around late afternoon, down 24 paise from its previous close of 68.25.
Healthcare stocks were in demand. Realty, capital goods and metal stocks had a good outing. Bank stocks turned in a mixed performance. Information technology, oil and FMCG stocks too were mixed. Midcap and smallcap stocks gained ground, bouncing back after recent losses.
Lupin climbed 5.2% after the company said that it has bagged tentative approval for its Abacavir Sulfate and Lamivudine Tablets, 600 mg/300 mg from USFDA to market a generic version of ViiV Healthcare Company's Epzicom Tablets, 600 mg/300 mg.
Sun Pharmaceutical Industries and Aurobindo Pharma gained about 1.7% each. Glenmark Pharmaceuticals, IPCA Laboratories and GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals were among the other prominent gainers in the pharma space. Cipla ended modestly higher.
Among the stocks in the metal index, Vedanta gained more than 5%, triggered by the company's board approving to raise Rs 300 crore through issue of non-convertible debentures. Hindalco, Tata Steel, Hindustan Zinc, SAIL and NMDC were the other prominent gainers in the metal space.
Capital goods sector heavyweight Larsen & Toubro gained 2.2% on strong results. The company reported a sharp 84.31% jump in consolidated net profit to Rs 1434.63 crore on 8.73% growth in total income to Rs 25491.96 crore in the September 2016 quarter, over the year-ago quarter.
The market breadth was strong with gainers outscoring losers by 2 to 1.