Benchmark indices close higher, led by banking and financial stocks

Benchmark stock indices closed higher on Tuesday supported by buying in banking and financial counters, particularly the HDFC twins, amid a mixed trend in global markets.

BSE Sensex, which includes 30 shares, jumped 446.03 points, or 0.71 percent, to settle at 63,416.03 points. During the day, it rose 497.54 points, or 0.79 percent, to 63,467.54 points.

NSE Nifty rose by 126.20 points, or 0.68 percent, to close at 18,817.40 points.

Of the Sensex package, State Bank of India, HDFC, Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, Bharti Airtel, Kotak Mahindra Bank, ICICI Bank, Tata Motors, NTPC and Bajaj Finserv were the top gainers.

HDFC Chairman Dipak Parekh said on Tuesday that the merger of major housing finance company HDFC with HDFC Bank, the country’s largest private bank, will be effective from July 1.

Maruti, ITC and Hindustan Unilever were the ones left behind.

In Asian markets, Shanghai and Hong Kong settled in the green while Seoul and Tokyo closed lower.

Stock markets in Europe were trading mixed. US markets ended in negative territory on Monday.

Brent crude oil, the global benchmark, fell 1.12 percent to 73.35 US dollars per barrel.

Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) offloaded shares worth Rs 409.43 crore on Monday, according to exchange data.

In thin trading on Monday, the benchmark BSE index fell 9.37 points, or 0.01 percent, to settle at 62,970 points, marking its third consecutive session of decline. The Nifty index rose 25.70 points, or 0.14 percent, to settle at 18,691.20 points.