Indian equity benchmarks extended gains and the S&P BSE Sensex surged over 500 points and NSE Nifty 50 Index climbed above psychological level of 11,400 ahead of exit polls due after the last phase of voting for general elections on May 19. Equity markets rose sharply in today's session on anticipation of good news among the market participants on the election front, analysts said. Gains in today's session were led by banking and financial sector heavyweights like HDF Bank, HDFC, Kotak Mahindra Bank and ICICI Bank.
For the week, Sensex advanced 1.25 per cent and the Nifty 50 Index rose 1.14 per cent. During the week, benchmarks witnessed heightened volatility as the India VIX, the gauge to measure volatility in the markets on the NSE, climbed 6.6 per cent. The Sensex and Nifty had two days of negative closing and three days of positive closing with Friday being the best day for the Indian benchmarks in three-and-a-half months.
"Market has gained in anticipation of good news on the election front. However, the reality is different from exit polls... investors should wait till May 23 before making big bets," AK Prabhakar, head of research at IDBI Capital told NDTV.
"Situation in financial markets is not such that it will give good returns even if BJP comes with majority the problems in markets so big that it will not be easy for the government to manage. After one month of results the markets might see a correction," Mr Prabhakar added.
The Sensex surged 537 points or 1.44 per cent to close at 37,931 and the NSE Nifty 50 Index advanced 150 points or 1.33 per cent to end at 11,407.
Fifteen of 19 sector gauges compiled by BSE ended higher led by the S&P BSE Auto Index's 2.45 per cent gain. Banking, Finance and FMCG shares also witnessed good buying interest as the respective sector gauges climbed above 2 per cent each.
On the flipside, information technology, healthcare and metal shares witnessed selling pressure with S&P BSE Healthcare Index being the top loser after it fell 1 per cent.
Mid- and small-cap shares also witnessed buying interest as the S&P BSE MidCap Index advanced 1 per cent and the S&P BSE SmallCap Index rose 0.51 per cent.
Zee Entertainment was top gainer in the Nifty 50 basket of shares, the stock rose 8.32 per cent to Rs 374. Bajaj Finance, Bajaj Finserv, Maruti Suzuki, Hero MotoCorp, Kotak Mahindra Bank and Bajaj Auto also rose between 3.7 and 6 per cent each.
On the other hand, Dr Reddy's Labs was top loser, the stock fell 2.72 per cent to Rs 2,724 after its profit declined 10.46 per cent sequentially to Rs 434 crore.
Yes Bank, Indian Oil, Vedanta, Hindalco, Cipla, Adani Ports and Infosys were also among the laggards.
The overall market breadth was positive as 1,401 shares ended higher while 1,115 shares ended lower.