The frontline Indian equity benchmarks lost some steam from the intraday peaks after NSE Nifty crossed the 5,800 milestone. The BSE Sensex managed to hold above the 19,000 milestone. Both the main indices gained by ~1% apiece.
The CNX Nifty Junior index was also up ~1% while the Bank Nifty rallied by 2%. It was the day of the Large-Cap stocks, with the broader indices playing second fiddle after out-performing the frontline peers in the past few sessions.
The Nifty rose to as high as 5,807.25, breaking above 5,800 for the first time since April 2011. Earlier, the Sensex surpassed 19,000 for the first time since July 8, 2011.
The Sensex ended at 19,058 after being as high as 19,107. The Nifty closed at 5,787 after touching a day’s peak of 5,807.
The Small-Cap index and the Mid-Cap index were up ~0.4% each on BSE.
BHEL, DLF, JP Associates, BPCL, ICICI Bank, Ambuja Cements, Axis Bank, ITC, Dr. Reddy’s, SBI, HDFC Bank'> HDFC Bank, Gail, Maruti, HDFC, Bharti Airtel, BOB and L&T were the top leaders.
Cipla, M&M, Hero MotoCorp., Bajaj Auto, Lupin, Ranbaxy, UltraTech and Asian Paints were the biggest laggards.
The Realty index was a big gainer, up ~5%. The Consumer Durables index rose 2.4% while the Banking index and the Capital Goods indices were up by ~2% apiece. Power and Oil & Gas indices gained 1.5% and 1%, respectively.
Pharma, IT and Auto indices finished lower. Metals index was subdued. FMCG and PSU indices gained ~1% each.
“The Sensex today surpassed 19,000 and the Nifty crossed 5,800 amid reports that the Government might clear bills aimed at hiking FDI in Insurance and opening up the Pension sector to foreign investors. The Cabinet is also likely to consider Companies Bill, Competition Bill and the FCRA Bill, besides approving the 12th Five-Year Plan and the proposal to set up a National Investment Board,” says Amar Ambani, Head of Research, IIFL.
“The only worry is that a few of these bills could face stiff floor test in the Parliament during the winter session. The bills require parliamentary approval before becoming law. Foreign companies are not allowed to invest in India's pension sector, while FDI is capped at 26% in the insurance sector. The UPA government has had to put on hold these bills in the face of stiff political resistance - from both allies and opposition parties,” Ambani adds.
The Sensex was heading for its highest close since April 29, 2011. The Sensex is up ~23% year-to-date, as FIIs have poured in a net of US$16.2bn into Indian equities, the most among 10 Asian markets.
The rupee, meanwhile is up 5.3% in the quarter ended September, the strongest quarterly gain since 2009, to become Asia’s best-performing currency from its worst in the previous three months. It advanced for a fifth straight day today, the longest winning streak since January.
Meanwhile, India's services sector expanded at its fastest pace in seven months last month, as a spurt in new business encouraged companies to add more jobs, a survey showed on Thursday.
The HSBC purchasing manager's index for the services sector rose to 55.8 in September from August's 55.0. A reading of 50 and above separates growth from contraction.
India's services sector makes up for over 60% of the country's GDP.
Asian markets closed mostly up after a couple of reports showed continued resilience in the US economy. Japan's Nikkei share average rose from a four-week closing low in choppy trade.
A softer yen offset weakness in Japanese technology shares on concern over slowing earnings. Japanese car makers extended gains as the dollar rose against the yen, countering losses for energy firms.
The Japanese currency fell to its lowest level in two weeks against the dollar. The Bank of Japan (BOJ) started a two-day policy meeting today after last month boosting its asset-purchase program by 10 trillion yen to 55 trillion yen.
US stocks gained on Wednesday after jobs and service industries beat economist estimates, easing concern about the health of the world’s biggest economy.
European equity benchmarks opened higher, building on previous day's gains in the wake of upbeat US data, even as investors braced for interest rate decisions from the ECB and Bank of England.
However, the continental markets soon lost traction and the benchmark Stoxx Europe 600 index turned negative. It was last trading down by 0.2%.
The main indices in Germany, UK and France were down by ~0.2% to 0.3% while the stock benchmark in Spain was down 0.2%.
US stock futures pointed to a cautiously higher start, as investors awaited weekly-jobless-claims report and factory-orders data ahead of Friday’s nonfarm-payroll data.
The dollar was largely softer, while commodities rose.
US retailers will be in focus as a slew of them were expected to report same-store sales for September.
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