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Sensex gains most in 3 weeks, up 358 pts

Snapping three-session losing streak, the BSE benchmark Sensex on Friday rallied the most in over three weeks and spurted 358 points on funds buying in bluechips at lower levels amid firm global markets.

BT Online Bureau | March 9, 2012 | Updated 19:45 IST

Snapping three-session losing streak, the BSE benchmark Sensex on Friday rallied the most in over three weeks and spurted 358 points on funds buying in bluechips at lower levels amid firm global markets.

The Sensex, which had lost 2.8 per cent in last three trading sessions on poor performance by the ruling Congress in state elections, bounced back by 357.72 points, or 2.09 per cent to 17,503.24.

It made the largest single-day gain since February 15 on the back of gains in banking and heavy industries stocks amid hopes that the Reserve Bank might cut lending rates at its monetary policy review next week.

The broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty recorded gained 113.10 points, or 2.17 per cent at 5,333.55.

A firm trend in the Asian region and higher openings in Europe boosted sentiment on reports that debt-ridden Greece completed debt swap and encouraging jobs report in the US.

Of the BSE 30-scrip index, 23 stocks closed with gains.

However 12 of the 13 sectoral indices, barring FMCG, ended in the green.

Jindal Steel, Tata Steel, ICICI Bank, SBI, HDFC Ltd and Larsen and Toubro were the major gainers.

The metal index gained the most, up 4.69 per cent at 11,499.68, followed by capital goods, up 3.75 per cent at 10,188.86.

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