Here are 10 things to know about the markets today:
Top percentage gainers in the Nifty basket of 50 shares were HDFC, Sun Pharma, Divi's Laboratories, ICICI Bank and Asian Paints, ending between 0.96 per cent and 1.27 per cent higher. Shree Cement, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), UltraTech Cement, Bharti Airtel and Grasim, finishing the day with losses of 1.17-2.44 per cent each, were the worst hit among 28 laggards in the index.
Gains in pharmaceutical, metal and real estate shares were offset by losses in IT, consumer goods and state-run lenders.
HDFC, ICICI Bank and Infosys were the biggest supports for Sensex, whereas TCS and Reliance Industries were the largest drags.
Optimism on a fast recovery from the coronavirus-caused slowdown among investors supported the markets, however caution prevailed ahead of the derivatives expiration due by the end of the day, say analysts.
The country's current account surplus -- or the difference by which exports exceed imports -- shrank to $15.5 billion in the July-September period, from a record $19.2 billion in the previous quarter, as its merchandise trade deficit grew, RBI data showed on Wednesday. The surplus stood at 2.4 per cent of the country's GDP, compared with a deficit of $7.6 billion, or 1.1 per cent, in the corresponding period last year.
The recent current account surpluses -- three straight quarters -- have largely been caused by a decline in the country's trade deficit, caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and by a drop in economic activity
European shares fell amid thin trading volumes on Thursday as lockdowns and rising COVID-19 cases overshadowed optimism around the rollout of vaccines in the New Year. The UK's FTSE 100 fell 1.70 per cent.
The MSCI World Index was down on the day as gains in Asia gave way to the losses in Europe. The index is headed for a near 14 per cent rise in 2020 after surging more than 60% from its March lows. Despite a stimulus-charged rebound since the pandemic-induced market slump in March, most European markets have underperformed the United States and Asia, where a series of record highs have been reached.
Still, despite the rising COVID-19 cases and increasing unemployment, investors were betting the rollout of vaccines in 2021 will unleash an economic rebound spurred by plentiful fiscal and monetary cash.