Mumbai: The BSE benchmark Sensex on Friday ended 121 points higher at 19,444.84, its highest closing since December 20, led by buying in energy stocks, including RIL and ONGC, on hopes of a gradual hike in fuel prices.
Brokers said RIL, ONGC, IOC and BPCL attracted heavy buying following reports that the government might gradually increase the diesel price to cut subsidies.
IT stocks, including Infosys, TCS and Wipro, gained in 1.2-1.4 per cent range amid a firming global trend as reports said US lawmakers have arranged talks with political parties over the budget deficit issue before the deadline. A decision is key to avoid more than USD 600 billion in spending cuts and tax gains that will start in January.
"Investors eagerly await the outcome of fiscal cliff negotiations before spending cuts and tax raise get initiated on January 1," said Amar Ambani, Head of Research, IIFL.
The Bombay Stock Exchange 30-share barometer resumed better and remained in positive terrain throughout the day before ending up by 121.04 points, or 0.63 per cent, at 19,444.84. On Thursday, it had dipped by 93.66 points.
Similarly, the 50-issue S&P CNX Nifty of the NSE also recovered by 38.25 points, or 0.65 per cent, to 5,908.35.
In all, 11 out of 13 sectoral indices closed with gains with Oil & Gas, IT, PSU and Teck taking the lead while Healthcare and Bankex indices closed with minor losses.
Market experts said the possibility of reforms, including diesel and kerosene price hike, rose after Finance Minister P Chidambaram on Thursday stated some tough decisions taken by the government recently may have caused "immediate pain" but were necessary to bring down fiscal deficit.