Mumbai: Benchmark equity indices climbed in early trade on Thursday amid buying in blue chips Larsen & Toubro and Reliance Industries.

The 30-share BSE Sensex climbed 41.65 points to 74,262.71 in early trade. The NSE Nifty went up by 20.1 points to 22,617.90.
The BSE benchmark later traded 225.06 points higher at 74,456.44 and the Nifty quoted with a gain of 77.50 points at 22,675.30.

Among the Sensex firms, Larsen & Toubro, Asian Paints, Axis Bank, State Bank of India, Reliance Industries, Wipro, Titan and Bharti Airtel were the major gainers.

Power Grid, Sun Pharma, JSW Steel and Tata Steel were the laggards.

The Reserve Bank of India will pay a record Rs 2.1 lakh crore dividend to the government for the fiscal ended March 31, more than double of what was budgeted expectation, helping shore up revenue ahead of a new government taking office.

The RBI board, at its 608th meeting on Wednesday, approved the transfer of surplus, the central bank said in a statement.

“There are positives and negatives for the market today. The biggest positive is the record Rs 2.11 lakh crore

dividend from the RBI to the government, which will give an additional 0.3% of GDP fiscal room for the government,” said V K Vijayakumar, Chief Investment Strategist, Geojit Financial Services.

This means the government can reduce its fiscal deficit and step up infrastructure spending, he added.
“Brent crude dipping below $82 is positive for India’s macros,” Vijayakumar said.

The negative for equity markets is the Fed meeting minutes which indicate concern over the stubbornness of inflation, he noted.

In Asian markets, Seoul and Tokyo were trading in the green while Shanghai and Hong Kong quoted lower.
Wall Street ended in negative territory on Wednesday.

Global oil benchmark Brent crude declined 0.40 per cent to USD 81.57 a barrel.

Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs) offloaded equities worth Rs 686.04 crore on Wednesday, according to exchange data.

The BSE benchmark climbed 267.75 points or 0.36 per cent to settle at 74,221.06 on Wednesday. The NSE Nifty advanced 68.75 points or 0.31 per cent to finish at 22,597.80.

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