Also, the NSE Nifty again crossed the 7,700-mark. The 30-share index was 57.05 points or 0.23 percent higher at 25,079.21 in early trade with sectoral indices led by consumer durables, oil&gas, healthcare, auto, realty and banking in the positive zone.
The gauge had rallied 348.32 points in yesterday's trade. The National Stock Exchange's Nifty regained the crucial 7,700-mark by rising 30.25 points or 0.39 percent to 7,701.65.

Dealers said widening of positions by participants ahead of key economic data -- industrial production (IIP) for February and consumer price index (CPI) for March -- to be released after market closing today and a firm trend in other Asian bourses influenced sentiment.

Moreover, expectations of a normal monsoon this year, too had a positive impact, they said. The government yesterday said after two years of deficient rainfall, monsoon this year is expected to be normal.

In regional markets, Japan's Nikkei was up 1.19 percent while Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.26 per in morning trade today. China's main Shanghai Composite Index, however, fell by 0.54 percent. The US Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.12 percent lower in yesterday's trade.

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