Mumbai: The market benchmark BSE Sensex on Thursday closed above 29,000-mark for the first time in 17 months after rising 119 points on buying in auto and realty sectors, while IT stocks took a heavy beating following TCS’ outlook warning.
The 30-share BSE barometer after a slightly better start, quickly slipped into the negative zone and touched a low of 28,854.56 on profit-booking in select scrips. However, on emergence of buying it staged a strong comeback to hit a high of 29,077.28 before finally settling 118.92 points or 0.41 per cent higher at 29,045.28, its highest closing since April 13, last year.
The 50-share index ended up by 34.55 points to finish the day at 8,952.50 after shuttling between 8,896 and 8,960.35. Sentiment also got a boost after domestic passenger vehicle sales grew for a 14th straight month in August with a 16.68 per cent increase, triggering buying activity in select auto sector stocks.
Among gainers, auto stocks were in limelight, after Siam raised growth guidance for the industry. Sector leader Maruti Suzuki hit an all-time high after rising 2.71 per cent to Rs 5,482.40. Bajaj Auto soared 3.55 per cent to Rs 3,091.95. This triggered selling in IT counters with the country’s largest software services firm TCS’ falling by 5.14 per cent to Rs 2,321.15. Wipro plunged 1.77 per cent Rs 473.60 and Infosys tanked 1.62 per cent to Rs 1,037.90.
Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services, said: “Tracking gains in bluechip stocks, investors were also seen building up position in broader markets, lifting the small-cap and mid-cap indices by 0.83 and 0.15 per cent. Market turned positive with continued liquidity while IT bellwethers were the laggards today due to reduction in revenue estimate, which capped the upside. With the US data continuing to diminish chances of a September rate hike by the Federal Reserve, domestic equities continued to attract interest.”
Globally, Asian markets mostly ended mixed with Hong Kong and Shanghai rising as investors cheered data showing Chinese imports rose in August for the first time in almost two years. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.75 per cent, while Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.13 per cent. However, Japan’s Nikkei fell 0.32 per cent. Europe was also mixed with the UK’s FTSE higher by 0.35 per cent, however, Germany’s DAX was down 0.19 per cent, while France’s CAC 40 was 0.06 per cent lower.