Domestic stock markets rose to record highs for a second straight session on Tuesday, led by gains in banking and financial services shares. The Sensex rose as much as 523 points to trade above the 44,000 mark for the first time ever, and the Nifty 50 touched an all-time high of 12,934.05. Investor sentiment was bolstered by news that US drug maker Moderna's coronavirus vaccine was 94.5 per cent effective in preventing COVID-19 infection.
The Sensex rose 315 points or 0.72 per cent to close at 43,953 and the Nifty 50 index went up 94 points or 0.74 per cent to close at 12,874 - both record closing highs.
The markets had clocked modest gains in a special one-hour "muhurat" trading session for Diwali on Saturday, and were closed on Monday.
Moderna Inc became the second drug maker after Pfizer Inc to announce promising trial data in the development of a COVID-19 vaccine, pushing global markets higher.
"There is comfort in the fact that the temperature requirements for (Moderna's) vaccine are quite moderate, which would make transportation easier," Anita Gandhi, director at Arihant Capital Markets in Mumbai told news agency Reuters.
Seven of 11 sector gauges compiled by the National Stock Exchange ended higher, led by a 2.4 per cent gain in the Nifty Metal index. The Nifty Bank, Auto, Financial Services, PSU Bank and Private bank indices rose 1-2 per cent each.
On the other hand, Media, IT and FMCG shares witnessed mild selling pressure.
Mid-cap shares witnessed buying interest, with the Nifty Midcap 100 index ending over 1 per higher. The Nifty Smallcap 100 index underperformed its larger peers.
Tata Motors was the top Nifty gainer, rising 6.15 per cent to close at Rs 158. Tata Steel, HDFC Life, State Bank of India, Adani Ports, SBI Life, Bajaj Finance, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank and Larsen & Toubro also rose, closing 2-6 per cent higher each.
On the flipside, Bharat Petroleum, Hero MotoCorp, NTPC, Indian Oil, ONGC, Dr Reddy's Labs, HCL Technologies, Infosys and JSW Steel were among the laggards.
Overall market breadth was positive, as 1,561 shares closed higher against 1,257 that ended lower on the BSE.