Sensex slips more than 150 points; Nifty below 9600-mark

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The Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE, which had closed at 31,283.64 points on Wednesday, opened higher at 31,351.53 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 31,365.39 points and a low of 31,296.01 points in the trade so far.

On the other hand, the wider Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) slipped by 3.60 points, or 0.04 per cent, to provisionally close at 9,630 points.

Still, the indexes were headed for small weekly gains on hopes the central bank will cut interest rates after minutes from a monetary policy committee meeting earlier this month showed one member acknowledging that inflation had eased. It finally ended 152.53 points, or 0.49 per cent lower at 31,138.21. The decline in both these indices was higher than the Sensex's decline in percentage terms.

Saudi guards fire on Iranian boat, killing fisherman
He added that Qatar should respond to worldwide and regional calls that request it to stop its support to extremism and terrorism. Iranian authorities on Saturday were still trying to determine the facts surrounding the incident which happened on Friday.

"Asian markets are trading mixed".

The gauge had lost 27.93 points in the previous two sessions.

The top gainers on the NSE were Sun Pharma (2%), Aurobindo Pharma (1.53%), HDFC (1.34%) and Ambuja Cement (1.31). The Nifty Auto index shed 1.7 per cent, with automaker Maruti Suzuki declining 1 per cent.

Fortis Healthcare plunged 7 percent after Malaysian hospital chain IHH Healthcare Berhad said it was nowhere close to concluding a deal to buy a majority controlling stake in the company.