NEW DELHI: Indian markets rallied sharply, shrugging off weak global cues, after a slew of exit polls
predicted a strong showing for the Narendra Modi-led BJP in state
elections, the results for which would be announced on December 8.
Modi is perceived as being more business-friendly and many investors are betting that he will undertake reforms to step up investments and boost economic growth.
Confirmation of a strong showing by the BJP will increase its chances of victory in general elections due by May, analysts said.
The benchmark BSE Sensex hit an intra-day high of 21,166 in the morning before paring gains to end up 249.10 points or 1.20 percent at 20,957.81.
The broader Nifty index closed at 6,241.10, up 80.15 points or 1.3 percent from its previous close.
The rupee was last trading higher at 61.74 per dollar.
Banks led the gainers, with ICICI Bank climbing 6.7 percent, while HDFC Bank jumped 4.5 percent and SBI advanced 1.9 percent.
Axis Bank jumped 4 percent on reports that three global payment processing firms are in the race to acquire its credit and debit card swipe machines business.
Engineering & construction giant Larsen & Toubro soared 4.5 percent, power equipment maker BHEL gained nearly 4 percent, automaker Maruti Suzuki advanced 3.7 percent and mortgage lender HDFC rose 1.8 percent.
Wipro posted a modest 0.2 percent gain after exiting its PC manufacturing business. Bharti Airtel gained 0.7 percent as it raised Rs. 750 million euros (about Rs 6,350 crore) through a bond sale in the overseas market.
Shares of Adani Group companies, which have a big presence in Gujarat, posted solid gains.
Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone rallied 4.2 percent, Adani Power rose 2.6 percent and Adani Enterprises added a percent.
ICRA rose 1.2 percent after its wholly-owned subsidiary ICRA Management Consulting Services and Cambridge Systematics have signed a pact to provide consulting services to the transportation sector in Asia, across Asia, and in Africa. 3i Infotech hit the 5 percent upper circuit limit after its CDR empowered group approved the conversion of rupee debt aggregating to Rs.1,298 crore into foreign currency debt of around $215 million.
Swan Energy soared 5.8 percent after its board approved a stock split.
Likewise, Mirc Electronics rallied 4.8 percent on receiving board approval for a rights issue.
Jubilant Life Sciences plunged 10 percent after receiving a warning from the US.
FDA over manufacturing practices at one of its US facilities.
Strides Arcolab slumped 14.5 percent as the pharmaceutical firm announced the completion of sale of its Agila Specialties Division to Mylan Inc. for a total consideration of up to $ 1.75 billion.
Cipla shares fell 0.9 percent.
The company said it has acquired 100 percent stake in Celeris d.o.o., Croatia, its distributor in Croatia, through its wholly-owned subsidiary Cipla Holding B V.
Alstom T & D India declined 1.7 percent after allotting 1.69 crore shares to institutional investors.
On the global front, the Asian markets fell to a three-week low as investors became more concerned about the US Federal Reserve’s stimulus plans amid signs of improving US economy.
With a slew of reports pointing to a brightening outlook for the world’s largest economy, investors sat on the fence awaiting Friday’s employment report that should shed further light on when the US central bank might begin tapering its bond-buying program.
European stocks also opened lower ahead of the ECB and BoE policy meetings, with many economists expecting the central banks to stand pat on fresh policy action.