Sensex continues to rule firm on heavy FII buying

Mumbai: The BSE benchmark Sensex lost momentum in early trade on Friday but continued to rule firm on persistent buying in realty, metal, FMCG and power stocks by foreign funds, coupled with higher Asian cues.

The Sensex resumed higher at 19,463.11 and shot up further to 19,562.55 before quoting at 19,454.48 at 1015 hours, a net gain of 9.26 points, or 0.05 per cent, vis-a-vis its last close.

However, the NSE`s 50-share Nifty eased by 2.55 points, or 0.04 per cent, to 5,831.20 at 1015 hours.

The major gainers in early trade were Reliance Com 2.88 per cent, BHEL 2.09 per cent, Reliance Infra 2.06 per cent, Hero Honda 1.82 per cent, Hindalco Ind 1.65 per cent, Tata Steel 1.22 per cent and ONGC 1.14 per cent.

The market breadth was strong. Oil and gas heavyweights Reliance Industries and ONGC extended their three-day gains on higher crude oil prices.

As per the provisional figures issued by the stock exchanges, foreign funds bought net shares worth Rs 3,324.59 crore on Saturday. FII inflows totaled Rs 8,548.14 crore in the eight trading session from March 22 to March 31.

Asian markets turned positive in early trade on Friday after a survey showed manufacturing accelerated in China in March.

Key benchmark indices in Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Singapore and China were up by 0.24 per cent to 0.74 per cent.