MUMBAI: Equities ignored bearish macroeconomic data and muted quarterly numbers to log a surprise rally today as the benchmark BSE Sensex recovered from 19-month lows to end 172.08 points higher at 24,854.11 on late buying in Reliance Industries and Infosys amid firm global cues.
The index rebounded from a nearly 300-point fall on buying at lower levels while a positive trade data from China helped in snapping two-day losing streak. Sentiment got a further boost from European markets, which advanced for a second day buoyed by a recovery in commodity and energy producer stocks.
"The sentiment on the Street was jittery after weak IIP data. However, with firm opening of European benchmarks and strong global cues, markets bounced-back sharply to shut the day positive," said Gaurav Jain Director of Hem Securities.
Despite the Index of Industrial Production (IIP) falling at the sharpest pace in over four years in November and consumer inflation shooting up to 5.61 per cent in December, bourses managed to log a relief rally.
The biggest gainer on the Sensex was RIL, which climbed 3.09 per cent to Rs 1,077.35 on hopes of posting record earnings next week. Besides, Infosys surged 3.08 per cent to Rs 1,082.35 ahead of its quarterly earnings tomorrow.
India's biggest IT exporter, TCS slumped to a 52-week low and closed 2 per cent down after the IT major's third quarter earnings missed estimates.
The 30-share Sensex after shuttling between 24,956.54 and 24,387.69 settled 172.08 points or 0.70 per cent higher at 24,854.11. The index had shed 252.30 points in previous two sessions.
The NSE Nifty ended 52.10 points or 0.69 per cent higher at 7,562.40. Intra-day, it dropped to a low of 7,425.80.
Meanwhile, the broader markets remained under pressure with the BSE small-cap falling 1.76 per cent and mid-cap shedding 0.46 per cent.
In overseas stock markets, Asian stocks ended higher after Chinese trade data for December beat expectations.
Key indices in Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan rose by 0.72 per cent to 2.88 per cent while China's Shanghai Composite ended lower by 2.42 per cent.
European markets were trading higher in afternoon deals with better-than-expected Chinese trade data tempering some of the concerns about a slowdown in the world's second largest economy.
Key indices in France, Germany and the UK rose between 1.31 per cent and 1.89 per cent.