The 30-share BSE index, which had lost 186.33 points in the previous trading session, recovered 164.11 points, or 0.80 per cent, to end at 20,700.75. Intra-day, it moved between 20,599.91 and 20,725.04 range.

Axis Bank, L&T, ITC and Tata Steel led the 21 Sensex gainers. Bharti Airtel was the biggest among nine laggards.
Friday's Sensex gain is its fifth rise in six days and drove the index to end 333.93 points higher for the week, which saw optimism over interim budget announcements. It had shed points in each of the previous three weeks.

The 50-scrip NSE index Nifty today regained the key 6,100 level by rising 64 points, or 1.05 percent, to end at 6,155.45. For the week, the NSE barometer gain 107.10 points.

Brokers said trading sentiment was bolstered on increased inflow of foreign funds into domestic markets amid a firming Asian trend. Higher opening in European indices also helped.

"Positive data from US triggered renewed buying in IT stocks. TCS, Wipro, HCL Tech and Infosys were all in the green. HCL Tech was up on buzz company's promoter Shiv Nadar is planning to exit the firm," said Rakesh Goyal, Senior Vice President, Bonanza Portfolio.

However, HCL Corp, which controls HCL Technologies, later denied any plans of selling the IT major.

Among banking stocks, Axis Bank jumped 2.85 percent, ICICI Bank rose 1.62 percent and SBI spurted 1.46 percent. Stocks of cement firms such as Ultratech, Shree Cement,

Ambuja Cement and ACC saw good demand on speculation of a hike in prices, said traders. Bharti Airtel slipped 2.91 percent on worries of USD 3 billion payouts over a 5 per cent stake claimed by Econet Wireless in the Indian major's Nigerian unit after losing a court case in the African nation.

Sectorally, the BSE Capital Goods index gained the most and increased 1.24 per cent. It was followed by FMCG index (1.20 percent), the Banking index (1.16 percent) and IT sector index (1.16 percent).


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