Domestic share markets started Thursday’s session at new record highs amid choppy trade continuing a record-breaking streak, as investors remained optimistic on COVID-19 vaccines and a fast global recovery. The S&P BSE Sensex index rose 112.05 points, or 0.24 per cent, to touch 46,778.51 at the strongest level recorded in early deals, and the broader NSE Nifty 50 benchmark climbed to as high as 13,713.55 — both all-time highs. Gains in auto, metal and pharmaceutical shares supported the gains, however losses in consumer goods and IT shares limited the upside. (Also Read: Stocks To Watch Today)
At 9:25 am, the Sensex traded 33.97 points, or 0.07 per cent, higher at 46,700.43 while the Nifty was up 18.35 points, or 0.13 per cent, at 13,701.05.
Divi’s Laboratories, IndusInd Bank, Shree Cement, Sun Pharma and Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, trading between 1.23 per cent and 2.61 per cent higher, were the top gainers in the Nifty basket of 50 shares.
On the other hand, Coal India, Larsen & Toubro, ITC, Adani Ports and Hindustan Unilever, down 0.73-0.96 per cent each, were the worst hit among 27 laggards in the index.
Reliance Industries, HDFC, HDFC Bank and IndusInd Bank were the top contributors to the gain in Sensex.
Overall market breadth favoured gains, as 1,296 shares on the BSE traded higher against 759 that succumbed to losses.
Equity markets across Asia perched near record heights as monetary support and the hope of fiscal stimulus in the US put traders in a festive mood.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan traded 0.30 per cent higher at an all-time high at the last count. Japan’s Nikkei 225 benchmark rose 0.20 per cent.
Brent crude oil futures — a proxy for global energy consumption and growth — rose 0.70 per cent to $51.45 per barrel, their highest since early March, before over-production fears and coronavirus worries pushed oil prices off a cliff.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell vowed on Wednesday to keep pouring cash in to markets until the US economic recovery is secure.
US lawmakers edged closer to agreement on a $900 billion coronavirus-relief spending package on Wednesday with top Democrats and Republicans sounding more positive than they have in months about getting something done.
Cryptocurrency Bitcoin extended gains after breaking past the $20,000 mark overnight. It was last up 2 per cent at $21,942.