Sensex breaches 24,000-mark

Mumbai: A benchmark index of Indian equities markets Tuesday crossed the 24,000-point mark for the first time in its history, recording the third straight high.

At 24,068.94 points, it was the highest mark so far, surpassing the previous record of 23,573 points hit Monday as the exit polls showed the Bharatiya Janata Party and its allies closing in on a majority in the just-ended country’s general elections.

The 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the S&P Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which crossed the 24,000 points in the morning session, opened Tuesday’s trade at 23,729.78 points, and ended trade at 23,871.23 points, a record closing high, up 320.23 points or 1.36 percent from the previous day’s close at 23,551 points.

The Sensex touched a high of 24,068.94 points and a low of 23,729.25 points intra-day.

“The exit polls, which predicted a victory for the BJP-led NDA, gave further fillip to the markets as they closed at a new record,” said Dipen Shah, head – private client group research, Kotak Securities.

“Expectations are now of a stable government at the centre and that has raised hopes of better growth for the economy. The markets have risen based largely on these expectations,” he added.

The rally was led by the capital goods, oil and gas, information technology (IT), consumer durables and technology, entertainment and media (TECK) sectors.

The S&P BSE capital goods index gained 324.43 points, oil and gas index surged by 295.35 points, IT index went up by 224.23 points, consumer durables index rose by 206.24 points, and TECK index moved up by 108.10 points.

However, healthcare index fell 47.59 points.

The wider 50-scrip Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) too closed at a record high. It surged 94.50 points or 1.35 percent and closed at 7,108.75 points after climbing to an all time high of 7,172.35 points.

The prominent gainers were: Bharat Heavy Electricals, up 10.25 percent at Rs.218.80; Hero MotoCorp, up 5.39 percent at Rs.2,428.85; ONGC, up 3.81 percent at Rs.372.05; Tata Power, up 3.62 percent at Rs.84.55; and Wipro, up 3.36 percent at Rs.528.80.

The losers included Dr Reddy’s Lab, down 3.99 percent at Rs.2,610.70; Tata Motors, down 0.94 percent at Rs.440.80; Hindalco Inds, down 0.84 percent at Rs.142.30; HDFC Bank, 0.63 percent at Rs.787; and Sun Pharma, 0.47 percent at Rs.610.20.

Among the Asian markets, Japan’s Nikkei closed 1.95 percent up while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was higher by 0.41 percent. However, China’s Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.10 percent.

In Europe, London’s FTSE 100 was trading 0.15 percent up and the French CAC 40 Index rose 0.61 percent, while Germany’s DAX Index gained by 0.19 percent.

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