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Sensex, Nifty snap four-day losing streak as government promises to tackle virus impact

A woman walks past the Bombay Stock Exchange building in Mumbai

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Indian stocks closed higher on Wednesday, snapping a four-session losing streak, as fall in new coronavirus cases in China and assurance from the government to tackle the epidemic's impact on business boosted investor sentiment.

The broader NSE Nifty 50 index ended up 1.11% at 11,992.50, while the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex closed 1.12% higher at 40,894.38. Both the indexes had declined nearly 1% in the last two sessions on the rising financial impact of coronavirus.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman met more than 200 business leaders on Tuesday to assess the impact of the epidemic, and said the government would unveil measures to help businesses. She did not elaborate on the measures.

The epidemic in China has hit India's manufacturing and exports of medicines, electronics, textiles and chemicals as China is the biggest source of intermediate goods, worth $30 billion a year, according to a presentation by the Confederation of Indian Industries, seen by Reuters.

Financials and energy stocks boosted the Nifty 50 index.

Infrastructure company Bharti Infratel was the top index gainer at 7.20%, while Tata Motors lost the most at 2.2%, after Jaguar Land Rover's chief executive officer said on Tuesday the company had enough parts from China to maintain its UK production for only up to the next two weeks.

Vodafone Idea rose as much as 48.33%, a record intra-day gain, settling high at 40%. The telecom operator, which owes nearly $4 bln to the government, said on Monday its board had authorised clearance of dues of up to 35 bln rupees ($490.09 million) by Friday.

(Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi)