Sensex positive for 2nd week, surges 211 points; macros cheer

Stocks: The Sensex extended its gains for the second straight week, surging 211 points to end at 25,838.14 on persistent buying mainly in Metal, Banking, Realty and Consumer Durable sectors on hopes that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) may further cut policy rates.

The Sensex gained in three out of the four sessions of the week. Persistent foreign capital inflows also boosted the market sentiment.

Positive macroeconomic data, including a cooling inflation, and a forecast of an above-normal monsoon this year, kindling hopes of a higher growth and more policy easing by the RBI, boosted market sentiment.

Wholesale price-based inflation in March remained in the negative zone for the 17th month in a row at (-)0.85 per cent even as prices of some food articles, mainly pulses, turned costlier.

The Sensex resumed higher at 25,833.16 and rose to a 16 week high of 26,080.07. But fell afterwards to 25,634.12 before ending the week at 25,838.14, still showing a gain of 211.39 points or 0.82 per cent. It has gained by 1,164.30 points of 4.72 per cent in two weeks.

The Sensex had last touched 26,166.52 on January 4, 2016 during the intra-day trade. The NSE 50-share Nifty also rose by 48.85 points or 0.62 per cent to close the week at 7,899.30 after touching 7,978.45 during the week. The Nifty has gained 344.10 points or 4.55 per cent in two weeks.

The Nifty had last touched 7,979.30 on December 2, 2015. The second-largest IT services company, Infosys, rose by 3.57 per cent after it posted 16.2 per cent rise in net profit at Rs 3,597 crore for the March quarter.