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Closing Bell: Sensex closes 150 points higher, Nifty at 17,050; Kotak Mahindra Bank leads

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Share markets recouped morning losses to close higher on Monday amid volatility, led by index heavyweights such as IndusInd Bank. Sensex rose over 25 points and Nifty gained 150 points even as broader markets underperformed the benchmarks. Some semblance of calm also returned to the global markets as investors latched to the idea that Omicron coronavirus variant would prove to be mild.

Closing Bell: Sensex closes 150 points higher, Nifty at 17,050; Kotak Mahindra Bank leads
Share markets recouped initial losses to close higher in a volatile session Monday as a semblance of calm returned to the markets. News of the variant triggered alarm and a sell-off on Friday that wiped roughly $2 trillion off the value of global stocks. However, investors are awaiting more details to assess the severity of the Omicron coronavirus variant and its impact on the world economy.
The 30-scrip Sensex closed at 57,260, as it rose 150 points and the Nifty50 index surged over 25 points to end at 17,053. The broader markets underperformed the benchmarks as both mid-caps and small-caps declined over 1 and 2.5 percent, respectively. The market breadth, therefore, remained in the favour of declines, with four stocks declining for every one that fell.
Among the 50 stocks on Nifty, Kotak Mahindra Bank, HCL Tech, HDFC Life, Titan, and TCS led the gains, as each scrip rose over 1.5 to 3 percent. Leading the losses were BPCL, Sun Pharma, Adani Ports, ONGC, and UPL.
Among sectors on NSE, investors focused on the IT stocks as the index recouped losses to close over half a percent higher. Despite a green opening, the pharma and healthcare indices closed in the red. However, Nifty Media and PSU Bank indices closed over 2 percent lower. Following thrm was Nifty Pharma and Realty indices, which declined over 1 percent each. Nifty consumer durables also closed the session in the green.
Globally too, battered battered stock markets and oil prices recovered from the Black Friday beating. European shares and US stock futures were trading firmly and the oil prices bounced over $3 a barrel. Safe-haven bonds lost some ground as markets latched onto hopes the new variant of concern would prove to be "mild".
S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq futures added nearly 1 percent. Both indexes suffered their sharpest fall in months on Friday. Europe's STOXX 600 index rallied close to 1 percent, having on Friday suffered its biggest one-day fall since June 2020. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan eased half a percent, but found support ahead of its 2021 low. Japan's blue-chip Nikkei fell over 1.5 percent as the country barred foreigners to head off the Omicron strain.
Oil prices, that had plunged over 10 percent Friday, recording the biggest one-day drop in several months, rallied over 5 eprcent Monday. The Brent crude oil futures were last trading at around $76 a barrel. And US crude rose 4.5 percent to $71.16.
Speculation that oil producing group OPEC and its allies, known as OPEC+, may pause an output increase in response to the spread of Omicron aided the oil price rebound. Gold has so far found little in the way of safe-haven demand, leaving it stuck at $1,792 an ounce.
With inputs from Reuters
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