Sensex Breaches Record 66,000-Mark, Nifty Scales Fresh Lifetime High

Benchmark stock indices hit their record high levels in intra-day trade today.
Benchmark stock indices hit their record high levels in intra-day trade today.

Benchmark stock indices hit their record high levels in intra-day trade on Thursday, with Sensex breaching the historic 66,000-mark for the first time following a rally in global markets amid moderating US inflation data.

Buying in market heavyweight stocks Infosys, ICICI Bank and Tata Consultancy Services also helped markets settle in the positive territory.

The 30-share BSE Sensex jumped 670.31 points or 1.02 per cent to hit its all-time intra-day peak of 66,064.21. The barometer settled 164.99 points or 0.25 per cent higher at 65,558.89.

The NSE Nifty went up by 29.45 points or 0.15 per cent to close at 19,413.75. During the day, it rallied 182.7 points or 0.94 per cent to reach its lifetime high of 19,567.

"Today's domestic rally was supported by the contra bet buying of the IT stocks which was supported by stable margins, new generation business opportunities and increase in pricing power due to moderation in USD, as latest US inflation is fast approaching the Fed's target levels," Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services said.

From the Sensex pack, Tata Consultancy Services, Infosys, Bajaj Finserv, Tech Mahindra, ICICI Bank, Axis Bank, Wipro and Bajaj Finance were among the major gainers.

TCS climbed 2.47 per cent a day after announcing its June quarter earnings.

The country's largest IT services company on Wednesday reported a 16.83 per cent increase in June quarter net profit to Rs 11,074 crore but sounded circumspect about growth prospects for the fiscal due to market uncertainties.

Power Grid, Maruti, NTPC, Reliance Industries, Hindustan Unilever and Nestle were among the laggards.

Official data released on Wednesday showed retail inflation rose to a three-month high in June on rising prices of kitchen essentials, while the factory output expanded at a faster pace of 5.2 per cent in May.

Retail inflation based on Consumer Price Index (CPI) increased to 4.81 per cent in June after declining for four months in a row but remained within the comfort zone of the Reserve Bank.

The broad market was trading positively at all-time high levels in anticipation of buoyant Q1 results and low volatility (VIX). However, a mixed start to bank earnings, coupled with ongoing concerns about domestic inflation, attracted bearish sentiment towards the latter half, Nair said.

In the broader market, the BSE midcap gauge declined by 0.64 per cent and the smallcap index fell by 0.54 per cent.

Among the indices, IT climbed 1.75 per cent, teck jumped 1.45 per cent, realty (1.04 per cent) and metal (0.49 per cent).

However, among the laggards power declined by 2.16 per cent, utilities fell by 2.09 per cent, oil & gas (1.20 per cent), energy (1.19 per cent) and auto (0.64 per cent).

"Markets traded volatile on the weekly expiry day but managed to end marginally higher. Initially, upbeat global cues triggered a gap-up start in Nifty, which was later followed by range bound move. However, a sharp decline in the second half trimmed the gains," Ajit Mishra, SVP - Technical Research, Religare Broking Ltd said.

In Asian markets, Seoul, Tokyo, Shanghai and Hong Kong ended in the green.

Equity markets in Europe were trading with gains. The US markets ended in positive territory on Wednesday.

Global oil benchmark Brent crude climbed 0.27 per cent to USD 80.33 a barrel.

Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) offloaded equities worth Rs 1,242.44 crore on Wednesday after unabated buying, according to exchange data.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)