Key benchmark indices on Thursday edged higher for the fourth straight trading session, hoping that the Union Cabinet would approve amended bills to seek foreign direct investment (FDI) in pension and insurance sectors.
The market breadth was positive as most of the sectoral indices, with the exception of healthcare, IT and auto, traded in the green. Bankex, consumer durables, power and oil & gas indices were up 1-2.5 per cent each. However, the healthcare index slipped 1 per cent.
Index heavyweight Reliance Industries (RIL) rose 0.7 per cent at Rs 853 after the company announced that it has signed a 15-year heavy crude oil supply contract and a memorandum of understanding with Venezuelan state-run oil company Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) to further development of Venezuelan heavy oil fields.
Investor sentiment on D-Street got a boost from Sebi data showing that foreign institutional investors (FIIs) remained as buyers of Indian stocks on Wednesday.
Analysts aver markets were enthused with the initial reform measures which have been announced by the government. These have coincided with the liquidity easing measures by the US and EU central banks, which has magnified the impact, and consequently, led to a sharp rally in various sectors.
Kotak Securities’ Dipen Shah said, “Markets have continued their upward momentum and the Sensex moved beyond the 19,000 mark for the first time in the past 18 months, after rising by about 25 per cent in the current calendar. Indian benchmarks have outperformed most of their global peers over the past few sessions.”
Even as the reform initiatives are a welcome start, Shah views that “more reforms on the core sector - land reforms, mining, fuel supply for power - will make the recent rise in the markets sustainable”.
The popular Sensex at BSE jumped 188.46 points or 1 per cent to settle at 19,058.15, its highest closing level from July 7, 2011. The index jumped 237.35 points at the day’s high in afternoon trade while it gained 70.06 points at the day’s low in opening trade.
The 50-unit S&P CNX Nifty at NSE jumped 56.35 points or 0.98 per cent to 5,787.60, its highest closing level since April 27, 2011. The index hit a high of 5,807.25 and a low of 5,751.35 in intraday trade.
Broader markets underperformed the benchmark indices as BSE mid-cap index rose 0.41 per cent and the BSE Small-Cap index gained 0.35 per cent.
The market breadth, indicating the overall health of the market, was positive with as many as 1,705 shares on BSE rising and 1,245 shares falling, while a total of 124 shares remained static.
BSE clocked a turnover of Rs 2,941 crore, which is higher than Rs 2597.43 crore on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the rupee also climbed sharply to 51.85 for a US dollar on expectations of strong inflows and a reduction in crude prices to $108 per barrel.