The benchmark Sensex 30 of the BSE has touched a new, lifetime high of 22,000 on the back of foreign funds buying bluechips stock, led by shares that are interest-rate sensitive. The Sensex closed at a record 22,055.48, up by 300.16 points, or 1.38%. Its previous closing peak was 21,934.83 on March 10.
Some major supporters in the ongoing rally were RIL, ITC, ICICI Bank, SBI, Hero MotoCorp, Hindustan Unilever and TCS. Nine sectoral indices ended with gains, with banking, oil & gas, metal and auto shares notching up a smart rise. Correspondingly, the 50-share bellwether NIFTY of the National Stock Exchange also hit a new peak of 6,591.50, before ending at a record 6,583.50. The breakout was triggered mainly by the buoyancy in banking shares as investors have started eyeing the RBI policy review fixed for April 1. A great majority of analysts expects no change in policy rates.
Mirroring the rising trend in stocks, the Indian rupee also hit 60.64 visa vis the US dollar. Investments in Indian shares through Participatory Notes, a favoured channel for ex-patriate HNIs and hedge funds from abroad, have touched a 3-month high at around Rs 1.73 lakh crore in February alone.