Sensex advances 153 points amid Omicron worries
Benchmark BSE Sensex advanced by 153 points on Monday following gains in index heavyweights Reliance Industries and TCS, even as investors remained cautious over the Omicron variant of the coronavirus spreading to more countries.
In a volatile session, the 30-share Sensex closed higher by 153.43 points or 0.27 per cent to 57,260.58. The index had tanked more than 500 points or over 1 per cent in opening trade in line with weak global cues.
The broader NSE Nifty edged higher by 27.50 points or 0.16 per cent to end at 17,053.95.
Reliance Industries rose by 1.26 per cent after its telecom arm Jio announced a hike in prepaid tariffs from the next month. Bharti Airtel also advanced on reports that the recently announced tariff hikes would boost the financials of telecom firms.
Kotak Bank rose the most among Sensex scrips, spurting 2.92 per cent amid reports that LIC will up its stake in the private lender to 10 per cent.
Gains in HCL Tech, TCS, Infosys, HDFC Bank, Bajaj Finance and Titan helped Sensex close in the green.
On the other hand, Sun Pharma, NTPC, Axis Bank, Nestle, Bajaj Auto and SBI were among major losers.
Asian stock markets declined further after governments imposed travel controls due to the spread of the new coronavirus strain.
The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo fell 1.7 per cent after Japan announced an entry ban on foreigners from Tuesday. The Shanghai Composite Index dropped 0.4 per cent and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong tumbled 1.2 per cent. The Kospi in Seoul declined 0.9 per cent and Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 fell 0.5 per cent.
Meanwhile, Brent crude jumped USD 2.82 to USD 74.41 per barrel in London.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers in the capital market on Friday as they offloaded shares worth Rs 5,785.83 crore, as per exchange data.