The buying momentum remained undisturbed right through the close today. Consequently, indices in the Indian stock markets ended the session with some very strong gains. While Sensex closed higher by around 285 points (up 1.65%), gains on the NSE-Nifty came in at around 90 points. BSE Mid cap and BSE Small cap indices also performed mostly in line with their large cap counterparts. Only one stock went into the negative on the BSE-Sensex for every five that went in the positive.
Markets across Asia closed with a positive bias today with Europe too trading mostly in the positive currently. The rupee was trading at Rs 50.5 to the dollar at the time of writing.
Today's gains come against a backdrop of poor showing in the past few trading sessions. However, besides bargain hunting what also led to the buoyant mood was the feeling that the selling in the banking space had been a bit overdone. Thus, the sector stocks emerged as the biggest gainers today. Rupee's steady decline against the US dollar also led to the IT heavyweights like Infosys and TCS making merry.
With the Union Budget sparing diesel cars, Maruti Suzuki, India's largest car manufacturer may decide within two months on setting up a diesel engine plant at its Gurgaon factory. The company had put this decision on hold, awaiting clarity over tax on diesel and a clear policy in the pricing of the same. As demand of diesel cars is going up, Maruti is increasing its diesel capacity to 3 lakh units per annum as opposed to 2.4 lakh units before the expansion. Besides, it also has an arrangement in place with Fiat to supply 1 lakh diesel engines per annum. The stock closed nearly flat on the bourses today.
ICICI Bank, India's largest private sector lender could raise as much as US$ 1 bn through an overseas bond issue of 10 years of duration. The decision seems to have been taken against a back drop of improved liquidity situation globally. It should be noted that the bank last month raised US$ 160 m through a one-year floating rate notes at 200 basis points over 3-month LIBOR. The stock closed higher by 3% on the bourses today.