The Indian equity benchmarks gained for the fourth session in a row on Wednesday led by gains in banking and financial services shares like HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, Bajaj Finance, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Bajaj Finserv and Axis Bank. The Sensex rose as much as 477 points and the Nifty 50 index reclaimed its important psychological level of 17,900.
The Sensex rose 367 points to close at 60,223 and the Nifty 50 index climbed 120 points to close at 17,925.
The market participants welcomed New Year 2022 with enthusiasm on hopes of economic reforms in the upcoming budget on February 1, analysts said. In the last four sessions, the Sensex has gained 4.2 per cent and Nifty has rallied 4.15 per cent.
Ten of 15 sector gauges compiled by the National Stock Exchange ended higher led by the Nifty Bank index's over 2 per cent gain. Nifty Private Bank, Realty, PSU Bank, Oil & Gas, Metal, Financial Services and Auto indexes also rose between 1-2 per cent.
On the other hand, information technology shares were witnessing selling pressure on account of profit booking, Nifty IT index fell nearly 2 per cent. Media, Pharma, Healthcare and Consumer Durables indices also ended lower.
Mid- and small-cap shares underperformed their larger peers as Nifty Midcap 100 index rose 0.15 per cent while Nifty Smallcap 100 index declined 0.25 per cent.
Bajaj Finance was the top Nifty gainer, the stock rose 4 per cent after it reported quarterly business update for the October-December period. Bajaj Finance's customer franchise as of December 31, 2021, stood at 5.54 crore compared to 4.63 crore as of December 31, 2020.
Bajaj Finserv, Kotak Mahindra Bank, JSW Steel, Grasim Industries, Indian Oil, Bharat Petroleum, Eicher Motors, Axis Bank, Tata Steel, HDFC Bank and Adani Ports also rose between 2-4 per cent.
On the flipside, Tech Mahindra, Infosys, HCL Technologies, Divi's Labs, Wipro, Power Grid, Dr Reddy's Labs, NTPC, TCS and Tata Consumer Products were among the losers.
The overall market breadth was positive as 1,834 shares ended higher while 1,551 closed lower on the BSE.