Mumbai, March 16 (IANS) The key Indian equity indices on Thursday touched new 52-week high levels, with the NSE Nifty closing above the psychologically significant 9,100-level for the first time.
The wider 51-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) had earlier on March 14 touched a new record intra-day high of 9,122 points. On Thursday, Nifty touched 9,158.45 points to break even that record.
Positive global cues, coupled with a strong rupee and fresh inflows of foreign funds infused healthy buying sentiments and brought a cheer to the Indian equity markets.
The benchmark indices closed with gains of more than half a per cent each, well absorbing the 25 basis points (bps) rate hike by the US Federal Reserve on Wednesday — the Fed’s second hike in three months.
The NSE Nifty was up 68.90 points or 0.76 per cent — to close at 9,153.70 points.
The barometer 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the BSE, which opened at 29,482.83 points, closed at 29,585.85 points — up 187.74 points or 0.64 per cent from the previous close at 29,398.11 points.
The Sensex touched a 52-week high of 29,614.79 points and a low of 29,482.83 points during the intra-day trade.
The BSE market breadth was bullish — with 1,802 advances and 1,039 declines.
The broader markets continued to outperform the benchmark indices. The S&P BSE mid-cap index was up by 1.55 per cent, and the small-cap index rose by 1.07 per cent.
“Nifty surged higher on Thursday to new life highs tracking firmness in global stocks as the US Fed raised interest rates without speeding up its timeline for future tightening. The Nifty closed above the 9,100 levels for the first time ever,” Deepak Jasani, Head – Retail Research, HDFC Securities, told IANS.
“The Sensex is yet to register a new life intra-day high or close. Major Asian markets have ended on a positive note. European indices like FTSE 100, CAC 40 and DAX too traded higher.”
On the currency front, the Indian rupee strengthened by 27 paise to 65.42 against a US dollar from its previous close of 65.69 to a greenback.
In terms of investments, provisional data with exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors (FIIs) purchased stocks worth Rs 1,360.10 crore, whereas the domestic institutional investors (DIIs) divested scrip worth Rs 88.17 crore.
On the sector-specific movement, Dhruv Desai, Director and Chief Operating Officer of Tradebulls, told IANS: “IT, banking, pharma, auto, oil-gas and textile sector stocks traded with firm sentiments due to buying support.”
“FMCG, cement, aviation and power sector stocks also traded in the positive territory tracking over all buying sentiments in the Indian equity markets.”
Sector-wise, all the sub-indices witnessed healthy buying, except the telecom index, which slipped a tad by 0.48 points.
The S&P metal index augmented by 328.88 points, followed by capital goods index, which surged by 240.65 points, and the consumer durables index, which edged higer by 240.43 points.
Major Sensex gainers on Thursday were: Adani Ports, up 4.73 per cent at Rs 324.55; Tata Steel, up 4.30 per cent at Rs 499.15; Bajaj Auto, up 2.31 per cent at Rs 2,936.70; Asian Paints, up 2.23 per cent at Rs 1,087.60; and Infosys, up 1.62 per cent at Rs 1,028.50.
Major Sensex losers were: Hero MotoCorp, down 1.48 per cent at Rs 3,348.80; Bharti Airtel, down 0.80 per cent at Rs 360.25; Reliance Industries, down 0.54 per cent at Rs 1,297.35; Coal India, down 0.36 per cent at Rs 292; and ICICI Bank, down 0.25 per cent at Rs 284.45.