Indian stock benchmarks rose for the second consecutive day on Thursday, led by strong interest in technology and financial stocks.
Most stocks in Asia posted tentative gains as investors noticed a possible slowdown in the pace of US Federal Reserve rate hikes. The Fed raised rates by 75 basis points (bps), but Chairman Jerome Powell dropped guidelines on the size of the next rate hike, noting that it would be “at some point” appropriate to slow down. However, US stock futures pointed to a lower start for Wall Street.
Back home, the 30-stock BSE Sensex zoomed in at 1,041 points, or 1.87 percent, to close today at 56,858, while the broader NSE Nifty moved up 288 points, or 1.73 percent, to settle at 16,930.
Mid and small cap stocks ended strong as Nifty Midcap 100 rose 0.84 percent and small cap 0.85 percent.
All 15 sector gauges – compiled by the National Stock Exchange – ended in green. Sub-indexes Nifty IT and Financial Services outperformed the NSE platform, up 2.81 percent and 2.41 percent, respectively.
On a stock-specific front, Bajaj Finance was the biggest gainer as the stock rose 10.46 percent to Rs 7,065.50 after the non-bank lender’s quarterly profit more than doubled to Rs 2,596 crore ($325.37 million). Bajaj Finserv, Tata Steel, Kotak Mahindra Bank and SBI Life were also among the winners.
Overall market size was positive: 1,910 shares advanced and 1,429 fell on BSE.
On the 30-share BSE index, Bajaj Finance, Bajaj Finserv, Tata Steel, Kotak Bank, IndusInd Bank, Tech Mahindra, Infosys, Asian Paints, Nestle India, Wipro, TCS and HCL Technologies were among the top winners with their shares higher than as much as 10.68 percent.
Furthermore, shares of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), the country’s largest insurer and largest domestic financial investor, rose 0.12 percent to finish at Rs 675.30.
By contrast, Bharti Airtel, UltraTech Cement, Dr Reddy’s, ITC and Sun Pharma finished in the red.
Shares of budget airline SpiceJet also fell a whopping 3.52 percent to close at Rs 36.95 after airline regulator DGCA ordered the airline to reduce its approved fleet to 50 percent for eight weeks this summer, citing multiple safety concerns. During the day, the stock plunged a whopping 9.66 percent to its 52-week low of Rs 34.60.