The 50-share National Stock Exchange benchmark - Nifty 50 index - extended its record-breaking run to second straight session on Friday led by gains in Reliance Industries, which rose the most since March 11, 2020, after global research firm Jefferies recommended buying the stock for target price of Rs 2,580. Meanwhile, declining daily Covid-19 cases also added to the bullish sentiment for equities. The Nifty 50 index rose as much as 132 points to hit record high of 15,469.65 and the 30-share Sensex rose as much as 414 points at the day's highest point.
The Nifty ended 98 points or 0.64 per cent higher at an all-time high of 15,436 and Sensex advanced 308 points or 0.6 per cent to settle at 51,423.
Investors' sentiment has improved in the recent past due to a steady decline in daily COVID-19 cases nationwide. Earlier this week, the country reported its lowest daily rise of cases in more than a month.
India's Covid case count rose to over 2.75 crore as 1.86 lakh more tested positive in a day. This is the lowest daily rise in 44 days. The steady dip comes as scientists are studying if the B.1.617 strain is behind the surge in the last two months.
Buying was visible across sectors as eight of 11 sector gauges compiled by the National Stock Exchange ended higher led by the Nifty PSU bank index's nearly 1 per cent gain. Energy, infrastructure, metal, financial services and private banking shares also witnessed buying interest.
On the other hand, pharma, information technology and media stocks faced selling pressure.
Mid- and small-cap shares underperformed their larger peers as Nifty Midcap 100 index ended unchanged while Nifty Smallcap 100 index declined nearly 1 per cent.
Reliance Industries was top Nifty gainer, the stock rose as much as 6.4 per cent, its biggest single day gain in over fourteen months, to hit an intraday high of Rs 2,105 after reports suggest that global research firm - Jefferies - has recommended buying Reliance Industries for target price of Rs 2,580 per share.
Adani Ports, Grasim Industries, Coal India, Eicher Motors, Kotak Mahindra Bank, JSW Steel, Bharti Airtel, Tata Steel, HDFC, Hindalco, Divi's Labs, Bharat Petroleum and ONGC also rose between 1-3 per cent.
On the flipside, Sun Pharma dropped 4 per cent to close at Rs 672 a day after the pharma company posted its March quarter results. Sun Pharma posted a net profit to Rs 894 crore in the fourth quarter ended March 2021, which is a rise of 124 per cent compared to the same quarter last year.
Shree Cements, Bajaj Finance, Bajaj Finserv, Titan, Dr Reddy's Labs, Nestle India, Power Grid and UltraTech Cement were also among the losers.