Stock markets extended their gains to a second straight session to register new all-time closing highs on Tuesday. BSE benchmark index Sensex rose 202 points to close at 38,896 while the NSE Nifty advanced 46 points to settle at 11,738. Gains across energy, financial services, metal and auto stocks pushed the indices higher, amid positive cues from global markets. Top gainers on the 50-scrip index were Reliance Industries, Maruti Suzuki, HDFC, Vedanta, Tata Steel and Adani Ports, closing between 1.5 per cent and 4.2 per cent higher.
The Nifty Energy index closed 1 per cent higher, mainly led by heavyweight Reliance Industries, which registered a fresh lifetime high during Tuesday's session. The BSE and NSE benchmark indices registered life-time highs of 38,938 and 11,760 during the session, respectively.
The Nifty has had a record-setting run in the last two months, while the Sensex has been Asia's top performing index this year. The new highs come as companies in India, the fastest growing major economy in the world, reported a 11.6 per cent annual increase in profits for the June 2018 quarter, the strongest growth in five quarters.
Prevailing weakness in the rupee against the US dollar boosted IT stocks. The Nifty IT - the NSE's sectoral index comprising IT shares - closed 0.4 per cent higher. The rupee gained as much as 10 paise against the US dollar to touch 70.06 on Tuesday. It is still down more than 9 per cent against the greenback so far this year. Shares in Infosys and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), the country's largest software services exporters, closed 0.9 per cent and 0.7 per cent higher respectively.
Buying by institutional investors provided further support to domestic equities, while other Asian peers lifted investor sentiment, say analysts.
Equities in other Asian markets advanced, with the MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan climbing 0.6 per cent for a second straight day of gains. The US and Mexico agreed to overhaul the North American Free Trade Agreement. The dollar remained near one-month lows against the euro, but gained against the yen after the US-Mexico deal boosted appetite for riskier assets.
"US deal with Mexico yesterday has reduced fear of trade wars, some analysts are extrapolating this as a template for trade deals with other countries", said Viral Berawala, CIO, Essel Mutual Fund.
Net purchases of shares by foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) stood at Rs 252.52 crore, and at Rs 1,117.24 crore by domestic institutional investors (DIIs) on Monday, according to provisional data from the NSE.
(With agency inputs)