Markets maintain momentum; Nifty hits fresh record as RIL zooms

·3-min read

Mumbai, May 28 (PTI) Rising for the sixth session on the trot, the NSE Nifty closed at a fresh lifetime high on Friday, powered by a robust rally in index heavyweight Reliance Industries.

The rupee's rising streak and daily COVID-19 cases falling below the 2-lakh mark also spurred bullish sentiment, traders said.

The Nifty surged 97.80 points or 0.64 per cent to finish at 15,435.65, closing at a record high for the second straight day.

The 30-share BSE Sensex ended 307.66 points or 0.60 per cent higher at 51,422.88.

Reliance Industries hogged the limelight in Friday's session, topping the Sensex gainers' chart with a jump of 5.90 per cent.

M&M spurted 2.13 per cent after the homegrown auto major swung into black in the March quarter with a profit after tax (PAT) of Rs 163 crore.

HDFC twins, Kotak Bank, IndusInd Bank, ITC and Bharti Airtel were among the other gainers, climbing as much as 1.47 per cent.

On the other hand, Sun Pharma, Bajaj Finserv, Nestle India, ICICI Bank, Axis Bank and Dr Reddy’s were among the laggards, tumbling up to 4.30 per cent.

During the week, the Sensex rallied 882.40 points or 1.74 per cent, while the broader Nifty surged 260.35 points or 1.71 per cent.

'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.

Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services, said, 'Constant fall in US dollar is driving the Indian equity market in addition to the falling infection rate. The sustenance of the rally is supported by the recent improvement in foreign investment with the stabilising US yield and drop in the dollar index. INR is regularly appreciating against USD.' BSE energy, oil and gas, telecom, metal and finance indices rallied up to 4.35 per cent, while healthcare, power, utilities and consumer durables were in the red.

Broader BSE midcap and smallcap indices underperformed the benchmark, dropping up to 0.48 per cent.

World markets remained upbeat following reports that US President Joe Biden will unveil a huge USD 6 trillion budget for 2022 as the economy emerges from the COVID-19 lockdown.

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 to close 15 paise higher at 72.45 against the US dollar.

The single day rise in coronavirus cases in India fell below the 2-lakh mark for the second time this month, while the recoveries continued to outnumber daily cases for the 15th consecutive day, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Friday.

A total of 1,86,364 new coronavirus infections were reported in a day, the lowest in around 44 days, taking the total tally of coronavirus cases to 2,75,55,457. PTI ANS ABM ABM

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