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Sensex gains 278 points in early trade; Nifty hits new peak

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sensexMumbai, Dec 4 (PTI) The benchmark BSE Sensex staged a strong comeback by surging over 278 points and the NSE Nifty hit a new high of 8,626.95 in early trade today as shares of ITC led the rally on expectations that the proposal to ban sale of loose cigarettes is likely to be put on hold.

Besides, a firming trend in other Asian markets buoyed the trading sentiments here.

The 30-share index, which had retreated from record-high by falling 251.28 points in the past three sessions, recovered by 278.41 points, or 0.98 per cent, to 28,721.12 with all the sectoral indices, led by FMCG, realty, oil & gas and banking, trading in positive zone with gains up to 2.26 per cent.

Also, the National Stock Exchange index Nifty gathered 89.30 points, or 1.04 per cent, to 8,626.95, breaching its previous peak of 8,623 touched on December 1.

Equity brokers said sentiments bolstered on expectations that a Health Ministry proposal to ban sale of loose cigarettes is likely to be put on hold following objections by some MPs, including some Union ministers, and farmers associations against taking drastic regulatory steps.

Besides, a better trend at other Asian markets after American bourses closed at yet another record-high in yesterday’s trade after a Federal Reserve report showed the US economy was growing, boosted trading sentiments here.

Among cigarette companies, ITC Ltd rallied by 3.98 per cent to Rs 377.45, Godfrey Phillips rose 6.57 per cent to Rs 627.55, Golden Tobacco by 4.02 per cent to Rs 37.55 and VST Industries rose 2.43 per cent to Rs 1,915.

Among other Asian markets, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was up 0.54 per cent while Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.91 per cent in early trade today.

The US Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.18 per cent to hit fresh record-high in yesterday’s trade.

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