Equity benchmark Sensex rallied 308 points and NSE Nifty hit a fresh record on Friday, tracking gains in index heavyweights Reliance Industries, HDFC twins and Kotak Bank amid positive cues from global markets. Further, decline in daily COVID-19 caseload too bolstered investor sentiment, analysts said.
The 30-share BSE index ended 307.66 points or 0.60 per cent higher at 51,422.88. The broader NSE Nifty surged 97.80 points or 0.64 per cent to close at its fresh peak of 15,435.65. Reliance Industries was the top gainer in the Sensex pack, soaring nearly 6 per cent, followed by M&M, HDFC twins, Kotak Bank, ITC and Bharti Airtel.
On the other hand, Sun Pharma, Bajaj Finserv, ICICI Bank and Dr Reddy’s were among the laggards. “Domestic equities remained upbeat and recorded fresh high as improved prospects of economy recovery and strong 4QFY21 earnings continued to bolster investors’ sentiments. A strong rebound in Reliance Industries was a key driving force,” said Binod Modi, Head Strategy at Reliance Securities.
Sustained market rally added over Rs 3 trillion in investors’ wealth this week, with the market capitalisation of BSE-listed companies crossing the landmark USD 3 trillion during the week, he noted. Further, a sharp drop in daily COVID-19 caseload in second wave (remaining below 2 lakhs despite higher testing) and improvement in recovery rates have emboldened investors in the last couple of days, he said.
Elsewhere in Asia, bourses in Hong Kong, Seoul and Tokyo ended on a positive note, while Shanghai was in the red. Stock exchanges in Europe were also trading with gains in mid-session deals.
International oil benchmark Brent crude was trading 0.25 per cent higher at USD 69.37 per barrel.
The rupee strengthened for the third straight session on Friday and closed 15 paise higher at 72.45 (provisional) against the US dollar tracking positive domestic equities. At the interbank forex market, the local unit opened at 72.46 against the greenback and witnessed an intra-day high of 72.31 and a low of 72.49 during the session.
It finally ended at 72.45 against the American currency, registering a rise of 15 paise over its previous close. On Thursday, the rupee had settled at 72.60 against the US dollar.
In the last three trading sessions, the rupee has appreciated by 51 paise. Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback’s strength against a basket of six currencies, rose 0.14 per cent to 90.09.