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The Indian equity benchmarks staged a gap up opening in trade on Thursday led by gains in Reliance Industries, Infosys, HDFC Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, ICICI Bank and HDFC. The Sensex rose as much as 391 points and Nifty 50 index surged to an all-time high of 15,678.55. Declining cases of Covid-19 in the country have sparked hopes of faster economic revival which has led to the bullish sentiment among market participants, analysts said.As of 9:23 am, the Sensex was up 257 points at 52,106 and Nifty advanced 81 points to 15,657.Meanwhile, Asian shares were a touch below a recent three-month top on Thursday with China a tad weaker as investors weighed inflation concerns ahead of key U.S. economic data while oil prices rose to near 1-1/2 year highs.MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.3 per cent to 711 points. It went as high as 712.57 on Wednesday, a level not seen since early March.Back home, buying was visible across sectors as all the 11 sector gauges compiled by the National Stock Exchange were trading higher led by the Nifty Metal index’s over 1 per cent gain.Nifty auto, IT, PSU bank, media and realty indices also rose between 0.4-1 per cent.Mid- and small-cap shares largely outperforming their larger peers as Nifty Midcap 100 index rose 0.8 per cent and Nifty Smallcap 100 index climbed nearly 1 per cent.Titan was top Nifty gainer, the stock rose nearly 4 per cent to Rs 1,646. HDFC, Kotak Mahindra Bank, ONGC, Power Grid, Reliance Industries, HDFC Life, Tata Motors, Shree Cements, Adani Ports and State Bank of India also rose between 0.7-1.5 per cent.On the flipside, Tata Steel, UPL, Cipla, Bajaj Auto, IndusInd Bank, Dr Reddy’s Labs and Hindustan Unilever were among the notable losers.The overall market breadth was extremely positive as 1,916 shares were advancing while 553 were declining in the BSE.

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