Domestic stock markets registered sharp gains on Friday backed by strong buying interest in financial and energy stocks, amid gains in global markets on hopes of recovery from the damage caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The S&P BSE Sensex climbed up as much as 1.87 per cent - or 640.32 points - to touch 34,848.37 in late afternoon deals, having started the day up 127.33 points at 34,335.38. The broader NSE Nifty 50 rose to as high as 10,272.40, after opening stronger at 10,119.00 compared to its previous close of 10,091.65. Heavyweight Reliance Industries jumped as much as 8 per cent to a new record high, after the conglomerate said it became net debt-free months ahead of its target of March 2021.
At 3:08 pm, the Sensex traded 516.54 points - or 1.51 per cent - higher at 34,724.59, while the Nifty was up 153.25 points - or 1.52 per cent - at 10,244.90.
Heavyweight Reliance Industries was the top contributor to the gain in Sensex, having earlier touched a new record high after the conglomerate said it became net debt-free.
Bajaj Finserv, Bajaj Finance, Tata Motors, Reliance Industries and Bharti Infratel, trading between 4.83 per cent and 8.65 per cent higher, were the top percentage gainers in the Nifty, as 32 stocks in the 50-scrip basket moved higher.
On the other hand, IndusInd Bank, Vedanta, HCL Tech, HDFC and Cipla - down between 1.45 per cent and 3.46 per cent - were the top Nifty losers.
Market breadth was highly positive with an advance-decline ratio of 2:1, as 1,781 stocks on the BSE moved higher against 823 that fell.
"In case, hopes of a V-shaped recovery in earnings growth in the second half of fiscal year 2020-21 does not materialize, the market can face a steep correction," said Ajay Bodke, CEO and chief portfolio manager (PMS), Prabhudas Lilladher.
Shares in other Asian markets pushed higher as investors weighed hopes of recovery from the slowdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic against the rising number of infections.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.61 per cent, having recovered from choppy trade earlier. Japan's Nikkei 225 benchmark climbed up 0.55 per cent. China's Shanghai Composite, Hong Kong's Hang Seng and South Korea's KOSPI indices rose 0.96 per cent, 0.93 per cent and 0.37 per cent respectively.
The E-Mini S&P 500 futures were last seen trading 0.44 per cent higher, indicating a positive start for US markets on Friday.
European shares started Friday's session on a positive note. While the United Kingdom's FTSE benchmark was up 0.34 per cent in early trade, France's CAC and Germany's DAX barometers were up 0.59 per cent and 0.38 per cent respectively.
On the whole, global markets have been sideswiped this week on fresh contagion concerns, prompting some investors to temper their optimism about how quickly the global economy can recover from the pandemic.