The broader NSE Nifty again cracked above the 7,800-mark as investors firmed up their bets. The current account deficit (CAD), at USD 8.2 billion, narrowed to 1.6 percent of GDP in the September quarter, which emboldened investors further.

Shares of metal, oil and gas, healthcare, power and realty spearheaded the rally on a fresh spell of buying. The 30-share Sensex settled higher by 259.65 points, or 1.01 percent, at 25,850.30 -- its highest closing since December 3.

The index had shed 145.25 points, or 0.56 percent, in yesterday's trade. The 50-share NSE Nifty reclaimed the 7,800-level to hit a high of 7,871.45 before closing the day at 7,865.95, up 79.85 points, or 1.03 percent.

Sentiment was buoyed after data showed that foreign funds after remaining sellers this month so far were seen adding to their holdings, brokers said. The rupee rising for the seventh straight day against the dollar came as a big positive.

At the forex market, the rupee was up 20 paise at 66.13 (intra-day) against the US dollar. Domestic shares had opened on a strong footing and mood remained upbeat during the session, tracking a firming trend at other Asian markets in line with overnight gains at the US
and European markets.

Among 30 Sensex components, 25 advanced and five lost. Sectorwise, the BSE metal index gained the most by rising 1.87 percent, followed by oil&gas by 1.47 percent, healthcare 1.38 percent and power 1.30 percent.

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