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Sensex, Nifty close with gains in choppy trade amid caution ahead of US inflation data

The 30-share BSE Sensex rose by 178.87 points to settle at 61,940.20

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MUMBAI, May 10 (PTI): Benchmark indices Sensex and Nifty closed with gains in highly choppy trade on Wednesday following buying towards the end of the session in select oil, banking and auto shares as investors awaited key US inflation data for further cues.

The 30-share BSE Sensex rose by 178.87 points or 0.29 per cent to settle at 61,940.20 as 22 of its components advanced and eight declined. During the day, it hit a high of 61,974.35 and a low of 61,572.93.

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The broader NSE Nifty gained 49.15 points or 0.27 per cent to end at 18,315.10, posting gains for a third day in a row.

Global markets largely traded in negative as investors turned cautious ahead of the US inflation data for April which would provide some indication about the Federal Reserve’s next course of action on the rate front.

Among the Sensex firms, IndusInd Bank rose the most by 2.84 per cent.  Power Grid, Tata Motors, Bajaj Finance, NTPC, HDFC Bank, Reliance Industries, Nestle and Kotak Mahindra Bank were the major gainers.

Infosys fell the most by 0.59 per cent. State Bank of India, Tata Steel, Hindustan Unilever and Titan were among the laggards.

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“The domestic market traded near the flatline, oscillating between gains and losses as investors refrained from taking a firm direction due to the uncertainties surrounding the US market,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

Globally, investors exercised caution in anticipation of the US inflation data and a meeting between US political leaders to discuss fiscal concerns. Oil prices edged lower as industry data revealed a surprise surge in US crude stock, indicating a potential weakness in demand, Nair added.

Markets consolidated for yet another session and it was a muted session on the sectoral front also, Ajit Mishra, VP – Technical Research, Religare Broking Ltd, said, adding that selective buying in realty, energy and auto kept the traders busy.

In the broader market, the BSE midcap gauge gained 0.34 per cent and smallcap index climbed 0.33 per cent.

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Among indices, realty jumped 0.96 per cent, oil & gas climbed 0.79 per cent, auto (0.73 per cent), energy (0.71 per cent) and utilities (0.51 per cent).

Commodities, IT, telecommunication, metal and teck were the laggards.

“Nifty managed to end in the green aided by last-hour buying. Global stocks were sluggish on Wednesday ahead of the US consumer price data that could impact hopes for interest rate cuts later this year, while President Joe Biden’s failure to break a deadlock on the debt ceiling also dampened markets,” said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research, HDFC Securities.

In Asia, markets in Seoul, Tokyo, Shanghai and Hong Kong ended lower following overnight losses in the US markets. European equity markets were also trading lower.

“US inflation data for April will be keenly focused as this would provide some indication about the Fed’s next course of action on the rate front,” Prashanth Tapse, Senior VP (Research), Mehta Equities Ltd, said.

Meanwhile, global oil benchmark Brent crude declined 1.39 per cent to USD 76.36 per barrel.

Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) were net buyers on Tuesday as they bought equities worth Rs 1,942.19 crore, according to exchange data.

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