Mumbai: Rising for the fourth day, the BSE benchmark Sensex Thursday jumped by 227.49 points to end at six-week high of 19,406.85 on good buying in auto, metal, banking and power scrips amid hopes of at least 0.25 percent interest rate cut by RBI and a rating upgrade by agencies.
The 30-share Sensex opened higher at 19,192.11 on positive cues from Asian markets and firmed up further to a high of 19,434.85 as FIIs bought shares in rate-sensitive sectors on hopes of RBI slashing interest rates on May 3 and talks of global agencies upgrading India's sovereign rating.
Sensex finally closed at 19,406.85, a net rise of 227.49 points or 1.19 percent from its last close. Today's closing was the index's highest closing since 19,427.56 on March 15.
In the last four sessions, it has gained over 675 points.
Similarly, the NSE 50-share Nifty also rose by 79.40 points or 1.36 percent to finish at 5,916.30 today.
HDFC, RIL, Tata Motors, ICICI Bank and ITC mainly drove benchmark indices higher. Dr Reddy's, Gail, Tata Motors, NTPC, Maruti Suzuki, Hero Motorcorp and M&M also shot up sharply.
Across the market, over 1,200 scrips rose helping investor wealth soar by Rs 59,000 crore to Rs 66.13 lakhcrore.
Talking to reporters after meeting a with representatives of rating agency S&P, Economic Affairs Secretary Arvind Mayaram in New Delhi said: "I think there is a case for an upgrade because we have taken the kind of decisions that most of countries in the world have not been able to take."
Similar meeting has taken place with Fitch on April 12. S&P currently rates India as 'BBB-', lowest in the investment grade, with a negative outlook.
"Hopes of atleast 0.25 percent rate cut on inflation worries is easing, is helping markets rise. A rating upgrade cannot also be ruled out," said Gautam Sinha Roy, VP?Equities, Motilal Oswal Securities.
In monthly derivatives expiry, dealers said April series witnessed strong up-move led by the banking but IT and metal stocks remained under pressure.
Outside of benchmark indices, aviation stocks saw good rise with SpiceJet surging 18.2 percent and Jet jumping 11 percent.
Most Asian stocks ended higher as investors weighed earnings reports and energy shares led gains. Key benchmark indices in Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan and South Korea rose by 0.45 percent to 0.98 percent while indices in China and Taiwan eased by 0.02 percent to 0.86 percent.
However, European stocks were trading mixed in their early trade today after earnings from some of the region's heavyweights added pressure, offsetting hopes for a rate cut at European Central Banks's policy-setting meeting next week.
Key indices in France and UK eased by 0.04 percent to 0.29 percent while Germany's DAX moved up by 0.22 percent.
Indication of higher opening in US index futures also boosted the market to some extent.
Turning to the domestic market, 22 scrips out of the 30-share sensex pack finished higher while others ended lower.
Major gainers were Dr Reddy's Lab rose by 4.72 percent, Gail India (4.25 percent), Tata Motors (4.21 percent), NTPC (4.06 percent), Maruti Suzuki (3.50 percent), Hero Motocorp (3.05 percent), M&M (2.83 percent), Sterlite Ind (2.61 percent), Sun Pharma (2.61 percent), Cipla (2.57 percent), HDFC (2.56 percent), RIL (1.97 percent), SBI (1.94 percent), Hindalco Ind (1.92 percent), BHEL (1.83 percent) and Bajaj Auto (1.79 percent).
However, Wipro dropped by 2.20 percent, followed by TCS (1.92 percent) and Infosys (1.55 percent).
"Overall the markets are trading with extremely bullish sentiments. And stock prices are reflecting that except that in the IT sector which is seeing selling pressure," said Nagji K Rita, Chairman & MD, Inventure Growth and Securities.
Among the sectoral indices, the S&P BSE-Auto rose by 2.79 percent, followed by S&P BSE-HC (2.04 percent), S&P BSE-Oil&Gas (1.43 percent), S&P BSE-Metal (1.42 percent), S&P BSE-Bankex (1.37 percent), S&P BSE-Power (1.17 percent) and S&P BSE-PSU (1.02 percent).
However, the S&P BSE-IT fell by 1.65 percent, followed by S&P BSE-TECK (0.84 percent) and S&P BSE-Realty (0.64 percent).
The total market breadth turned positive as 1,221 stocks ended up while 1,158 stocks finished down. The total turnover rose to Rs 2,457.36 crore from Rs 1,893.83 crore on Tuesday.
FIIs bought shares worth a net Rs 226.21 crore on Tuesday as per provisional data from stock exchanges.
First Published: Thursday, April 25, 2013, 16:47