Sensex erases 2020 losses with 724-pt leap; global markets rally amid U.S. poll gridlock

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NSE Nifty zoomed 211.80 points or 1.78% to finish at 12,120.30.

Equity benchmarks galloped to near nine month-highs on Thursday following across-the-board buying as global markets ratcheted higher despite uncertainty surrounding the U.S. election results.

Rallying for the fourth straight session, the BSE Sensex surged 724.02 points or 1.78 per cent to close at 41,340.16. The benchmark has closed above the 41,000-level for the first time since mid-February this year.

The Sensex has also wiped off all losses for the 2020 calendar year. It had closed at 41,306.02 on January 1, 2020.  Similarly, the broader NSE Nifty zoomed 211.80 points or 1.78% to finish at 12,120.30.

All Sensex components closed in the green, led by banking, finance, energy, IT and metal counters. SBI was the top gainer, soaring 5.63% following robust Q2 results.

Tata Steel, IndusInd Bank, Bajaj Finance, Bajaj Finserv, HCL Tech, Asian Paints and Titan were the other prominent winners, spurting up to 5.34%.

Global equities marched higher amid indications that Democratic Party candidate Joe Biden may clinch the U.S. presidential polls, even as the Republicans look likely to retain their slim majority in the Senate.

Meanwhile, the Trump campaign has moved court over the ballot counting process in battleground states like Pennsylvania and Michigan, raising prospects of protracted legal wranglings over the tightly-contested election.

Investors are expecting less confrontational trade policies with China and other countries under a possible Biden presidency, while the Republican-controlled Senate would prevent measures like higher taxes or stricter regulations, analysts said.

“Domestic market moved in tandem with the global market and marched to 8 months high, in expectation that the U.S. presidential election is moving in favour of the Democratic Party.

“Further, investors are expecting new supportive measures from ongoing Fed policy meet while keeping rates unchanged. Positive result season and increasing inflows from foreign markets will help the market to maintain its optimism going forward,” said Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services.

Barring realty, all BSE sectoral indices closed higher, led by metal (4.43%, oil and gas (3.19%), basic materials (2.57%), energy (2.39%) and bankex (2.14%).

The BSE midcap and smallcap indices jumped up to 1.74%. Elsewhere in Asia, bourses in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Seoul and Tokyo ended with significant gains.

Stock exchanges in Europe were also trading on a positive note in early deals. In the forex market, the rupee zoomed 40 paise to close at 74.36 against the US dollar.

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