Sensex closes at 34 points (Roundup)

Mumbai, April 18 (IANS) A benchmark index for Indian equities markets closed 34.45 points or 0.20 percent higher Wednesday, a day after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announced a cut in key interest rate.

The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 17,447.26 points, closed the day’s trade at 17,392.39 points, up 0.20 percent or 34.45 points from its previous close at 17,357.94 points.
The 50-scrip S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange ended the day 0.19 percent or 10.30 points higher at 5,300 points.
There was good buying support for interest rate-sensitive consumer durables and auto stocks.
The BSE Auto index rose by 157.86 points at 10,529.39. The consumer durables index went up about 30.99 points at 6,722.06.
Auto companies were some of the biggest gainers as the rate cut is expected to affect the sectoral sales positively.
These included Bajaj Auto, up 45.25 points or 2.70 percent at Rs.1,718.35, Tata Motors, up 8.15 points or 2.70 percent at Rs.309.60, Hero MotoCorp, up 17.60 points or 0.83 percent at Rs.2,140, Mahindra and Mahindra, up 7.90 points or 1.15 percent at Rs.692.35, and Maruti Suzuki, up 8.30 points or 0.62 percent Rs.1,349.90.
Other top gainers include Sun Pharma, up 14.70 points or 2.52 percent at Rs.598.90, Tata Power, up 2.40 points or 2.30 percent at Rs.106.60, Hindalco, up 2.75 points or 2.15 percent at Rs.130.65, and Wipro, up 5.90 points or 1.40 percent at Rs.427.
Top losers included DLF, down 4.20 points or 2.05 percent at Rs.200.80, ITC, down 4.40 points or 1.79 percent at Rs.241.75, Larsen and Tubro (L&T), down 12.65 points or 0.95 percent at Rs.1,320.90, BHEL, down 2.15 points or 0.82 percent at Rs.260.75, and Coal India, down 2.10 points or 0.60 percent at Rs.347.90.
The midcap index was up 29.64 points while the smallcap index closed 34.13 points higher.
The market opened strong on firm Asian trend, but lower openings in Europe triggered profit booking. ITC, which has emerged as the most influential stock in the index, fell by 1.79 per cent to close at 241.75 and SBI went down 0.45 per cent to 2,289.60.
The RBI Tuesday in its annual monetary policy for 2012-13 had cut some key rates by 50 basis points in a bid to push industrial growth and stimulate economy — a move that may also see interest rates falling on housing, automobile and commercial loans.