A benchmark index for Indian markets on Wednesday closed within striking distance of the 18,000 mark, gaining 106 points. It was at a three-week high with traders eyeing the upcoming rate review on Thursday and the federal budget the day after.
The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) opened at 18,003.15 points, closed at 17,919.3 points, up 105.68 points or 0.59 per cent over its previous close at 17,813.62 points.
The Sensex had breached the 18,000 point mark in early trade but slipped later.
The 50-scrip S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange similarly ended higher at 5,463.90 points, up 34.4 points or 0.63 per cent from its previous close.
Broader markets were quiet with the BSE 500 index closing 0.56 per cent higher. The BSE midcap and small cap indices ended mixed.
Banking, capital goods and PSU stocks were the major gainers, while realty and IT scrips came under losses. The market breadth was negative with 1,403 stocks advancing, 1,513 declining and 133 remaining unchanged.
According to data available with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), foreign institutional investors bought stocks worth $182.05 million Wednesday.