Markets end on a high; Sensex gains 300 points
The markets picked up momentum in the noon session to end the week on a high due to strength in banking and oil stocks.
The optimistic cues from the global front would have also contributed to the positive mood on Dalal Street.
The Sensex ended at 24,693, up 318 points and the Nifty ended comfortably above the 7,300 mark at 7,367, up 90 points.
The broader markets continued their outperformance for the fifth consecutive session; the midcap and smallcap indices jumped by nearly 2% each at 8668 and 9128 respectively.
On the global front, the Asian markets edged up to one-year highs on Friday as investors welcomed signs of improving momentum in the world's biggest economies, with Tokyo's Nikkei poised to score its first weekly gain in nearly a month thanks to a weaker yen.
Nikkei, Shanghai, Straits Times and Taiwan have gained upto half a percent each as investors welcomed signs of a turnaround in the world's biggest economies.
But the European markets, including the FTSE, CAC and DAX, are trading virtually unchanged due to caution ahead of weekend elections in Ukraine and European Union.
In economy-related news, Deutsche Bank downgraded Indian stocks to "neutral" from "neutral/overweight" relative to other global emerging markets, saying valuations appear "very stretched" against lower GDP growth.
The Nifty has risen 24.4% since Sept. 13 when Narendra Modi was declared as BJP's prime ministerial candidate.
SBI was on fire, soaring by 10% to Rs 2,768 to top the gainer's list on the BSE.
The banking major reached its highest level since May 2011 after reporting a better-than-expected net profit of Rs 3,041 for the quarter ended March 31, 2014.
The stock has seen a sharp 30% jump within the span of a week.
The feel-good sentiment rubbed onto the other PSU banking counters.
Canara Bank, Andhra Bank, Syndicate Bank, Oriental Bank of Commerce, Allahabad Bank, IDBI Bank and Indian Overseas Bank surged 5-15% each on the National Stock Exchange.
Oil stocks also had a good day. Index bellweather RIL firmed up by 2.6% at Rs 1129 on plans to raise up to Rs 10,000 crore in debt this financial year to part fund its $26 billion investment plan.
RIL has sought shareholder nod to raise funds through non-convertible debenture in one or more tranches.
After languishing for many years, the shares of RIL have climbed around 40% in the past three months.
ONGC jumped by 3.8% at Rs 408.
Power stocks continued their good run, with Tata Power gaining 6.9% at Rs 106 and NTPC adding 5.4% at Rs 161.
PSU major BHEL rallied 3.1% at Rs 272 to make it more than 50% in the past 12 trading sessions on hopes of a revival in the PSU sector and pick-up in economic growth as the Modi government takes charge.
Meanwhile, the state-owned power equipment maker has commissioned the 520 MW hydro power project in Himachal Pradesh.
Maruti Suzuki India raced ahead by 5.9% to Rs 2,390, extending Thursday's 4.4% rally, triggered by an upbeat view on the automobile sector, especially after the BJP's victory in the Lok Sabha polls.
Maruti, some experts say, will be among the top beneficiaries of any revival in the auto sector.
Reliance Communications (RCom) soared 4% at Rs 144 on the buzz that China’s Citic Telecom, listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, is in talks with the Anil Ambani-led company to buy into its undersea cable assets.
Ashok Leyland jumped to 52-week high of Rs 33, up by a whopping 15.9%, on the BSE after reporting strong Q4 results after market hours on Thursday, 22 May 2014.
Realty stocks were in demand; DLF, Godrej Properties, Parsvnath Developers, Oberoi Realty and Housing Development & Infrastructure (HDIL) have gained between 2% and 5% each.
On the other hand, HDFC Bank weakened by nearly 1.7% to Rs 788, extending its past two day's decline, to top the losers list on the BSE on reports that the government has turned down the private sector bank’s proposal to raise the cap on foreign institutional investment to 67.55% from 49%.
ITC shed 1.1% at Rs 340 although its Q4 net profit rose 18% at Rs 2,276 crore compared to Rs 1,928 crore in the same period last year.
Net sales were at Rs 9,145 crore during the same period.
The market breadth was strong; Out of 3128 stocks traded on the BSE, there were 2193 gainers and 846 losers.
Image: The Bombay Stock Exchange.