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Sensex, Nifty rally, but suffer worst week since 2008

Brokers react while trading during the presentation of the federal budget at a stock brokerage firm in Mumbai, February 1, 2018. REUTERS/Shailesh Andrade/Files

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Indian shares rebounded strongly to finish 6% higher on Friday, driven by gains in IT and financial stocks, as policymakers across the world launched fresh efforts to stem the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Nifty closed up 5.83% at 8,745.45, while the Sensex settled 5.75% higher at 29,915.96.

The Nifty 50 saw its best one-day gain in more than six months, but ended the week more than 12% lower. Both Nifty and Sensex logged their worst week since 2008.

Asian shares made a partial comeback from a global rout and European shares were set for similar gains on Friday.

Central banks in Europe, Japan, Australia and the United States announced new stimulus to help businesses battered by a near halt in economic activity due to the virus outbreak, and the U.S. Senate was debating a $1 trillion-plus package that would include direct financial help for Americans.

In Mumbai, shares of state-run Oil and Natural Gas Corp were among the top two gainers on the Nifty 50, closing 18.5% higher as oil prices bounced back.

The Nifty Energy index slipped 6.92% this week.

The Nifty IT index settled up 9.0%, with shares of Infosys ending the day more than 7.0% higher. For the week, the IT index was down 8.7%.

Shares in India’s largest private-sector lender HDFC Bank slid as much as 7.9% and closed down 1.4% after Bernstein downgraded the stock.

Reporting by Chandini Monnappa in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber, Anil D’Silva and Shounak Dasgupta