Sensex extends gains for 3rd day amid global rally

The rupee on Tuesday slumped 30 paise to close at 74.58 against the US dollar, tracking the strength of the American currency in the overseas market.

Mumbai: Equity benchmarks defied gravity for the third session on the trot on Tuesday, in tandem with a rally in global markets as investors shrugged off soaring Omicron cases in multiple countries.

Strong domestic trade data further added to the buying momentum despite a depreciating rupee, traders said.

The 30-share BSE Sensex opened with significant gains and saw further consolidation as the trade progressed. It finally closed at 59,855.93, clocking a gain of 672.71 points or 1.14 per cent.

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Likewise, the NSE Nifty rose 179.55 points or 1.02 per cent to end at 17,805.25.

On the Sensex chart, major gainers were NTPC, PowerGrid, SBI, Titan, Reliance Industries, Axis Bank and TCS, rising as much as 5.48 per cent.

In contrast, Sun Pharma, IndusInd Bank, UltraTech Cement, Dr Reddy’s and Infosys slipped up to 1.21 per cent.

“Tracking strong momentum of global peers, domestic bourses witnessed a smooth sail, steered by index heavyweights and gains in financials and consumer durables. Despite surging COVID cases, investor sentiments remain positive globally as reports suggest lower impact of the new variant on economic recovery.

“However, India’s unemployment rate rose to 7.9 per cent in December as compared to 7 per cent in November owing to muted economic activity in rural and urban India amid rise in Omicron cases,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

V K Vijayakumar, Chief Investment Strategist at Geojit Financial Services, said the US markets setting record highs on the first trading day of 2022 is auspicious for global stock markets.

If the FIIs’ buying of Monday is an indication of their renewed interest in India, financials particularly the leading banks, are likely to continue the momentum witnessed in the previous session, he added.

However, the third wave of the pandemic is an area of concern even though the market’s view is that it is unlikely to impact economic activity, Vijayakumar opined.

Of the 19 sectoral indices, 16 logged gains. BSE power, utilities, energy and banking indices were the major gainers, spurting up to 2.25 per cent.

Broader BSE smallcap and midcap indices underperformed the benchmark, climbing up to 0.39 per cent.

Global equities extended their strong start to 2022 despite the looming threat of the new coronavirus variant derailing economic recovery.

Elsewhere in Asia, bourses in Tokyo, Hong Kong and Seoul mustered gains, while Shanghai ended in the red.

Markets in Europe were also trading in the positive zone in mid-session deals.

Meanwhile, international oil benchmark Brent crude rose 0.27 per cent to USD 79.19 per barrel.

Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) were net buyers in the capital market on Monday, purchasing shares worth Rs 575.39 crore, exchange data showed.

The country’s exports in December 2021 surged 37 per cent on an annual basis to USD 37.29 billion, the highest-ever monthly figure, on the back of healthy performance by sectors like engineering, textiles and chemicals, even as the trade deficit widened to USD 21.99 billion, as per official data released after market hours on Monday.

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