But volumes were thin for yet another session as most foreign investors are away on a vacation in a year-end holiday season and other participants stayed off building their bets
in a big way.

Covering-up of short positions by speculators added to the momentum, but profit-booking and caution ahead of the December derivatives expiry made sure the gains were limited. Marked by such contrasting fortunes, the 30-share Sensex ended higher by 45.35 points, or 0.17 percent, at 26,079.48. The barometer had gained 195.42 points in the previous session.

The 50-share NSE Nifty closed at 7,928.95, up 3.80 points, or 0.05 percent. Intra-day, it hovered between 7,942.15 and 7,902.75.

"Key benchmark indices in India remained indecisive in trade today. Gains in European stocks triggered a recovery even as US stocks edged lower yesterday, weighed down by a drop in energy stocks as crude oil prices fell," said Shreyash Devalkar, Fund Manager – Equities, BNP Paribas Mutual Fund.

Sentiment took a turn for the better after Asian and European stocks rose across the board despite losses on the Wall Street overnight.

Some stability in oil prices above the 11-year low and China stocks steadying after the previous session's heavy losses brought some cheer.

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