With the stock markets flushing with funds, the Sensex on Thursday pierced the 34,500-mark and soared to a fresh life-time high on optimism surrounding corporate earnings. The BSE Sensex jumped 70.42 points to end at a record high of 34,503.49, while the broader NSE Nifty finished at a new peak of 10,651.20, up 19 points.
The Sensex broke its previous closing high of 34,443.19 hit on January 9.
“The markets continued to stay on the positive side on traction in IT, realty and small-cap stocks but some volatility was seen in banks. Investors are focusing on earnings growth in Q3 to support the premium valuation. Tomorrow’s (Friday’s) CPI inflation data is expected to rise which may influence investors to remain cautious,” said Vinod Nair, head of research, Geojit Financial Services.
Infosys was the top performer among the Sensex constituents, rising 2.28 per cent ahead of its Q3 earnings, while Bharti Airtel jumped 1.66 per cent. Other gainers were Kotak Bank, HDFC Ltd, Asian Paints, HUL, M&M, Yes Bank, Sun Pharma, Tata Motors, SBI, HDFC Bank, Adani Ports, ITC Ltd, Dr Reddy’s and ONGC, gaining up to 1.61 per cent. “The Sensex will soon cross the 35,000 level if domestic fund buying continues,” said a fund manager.
However, shares of private lender IndusInd Bank fell the most at 2.08 per cent despite the bank posting a 24.72 per cent increase in net profit to Rs 936.25 crore for the quarter ended December 31, 2017.
Among sectoral indices, the BSE realty index rose 2 per cent, followed by IT 0.89 per cent, teck 0.79 per cent, FMCG 0.44 per cent, healthcare 0.27 per cent and auto 0.17 per cent. Consumer durables, oil and gas, capital goods, infrastructure and PSU indices ended lower.
However, the rupee once again turned shaky against the US dollar and settled lower by 6 paise to 63.66 on fresh bouts of demand for the American currency.
Though, the home currency managed to withstand early dollar pressure after plunging to a low of 63.81 intra-day. Overall forex sentiment remained buoyant on the hopes of more inflows from foreign investors, after the government announced FDI norms relaxation for some sectors.
At the Interbank forex market, the Indian unit resumed modestly weak at 63.65 against Wednesday’s close of 63.60. It later touched a low of 63.81 on heavy dollar pressure. The dollar index was down at 92.02 in early trade. With PTI