The benchmark indices ended at record highs on Wednesday, with the BSE Sensex closing in on the 50,000 mark, on the back of intense buying in auto and information technology shares. Better-than-expected corporate earnings in the December quarter and hopes of bold economic reforms in the upcoming Budget bolstered investor sentiment, analysts said.
The BSE Sensex rose to an intra-day high of 49,874.42 before ending at 49,792.12, up 393.83 points or 0.80 per cent and the Nifty 50 index closed above 14,600 at 14,644.70, up 123.55 points or 0.85 per cent. The broader markets also had a strong closing; the S&P BSE MidCap index rose 1 per cent at 19,156.55 and S&P BSE SmallCap index advanced 0.55 per cent at 18,743.39.
All the BSE sectoral indices ended in the green, with IT, auto and PSU Bank adding 2 per cent each.
Strong corporate earnings by tech heavyweights such as TCS, Infosys, Wipro, HCL Technologies and HDFC Bank are fuelling the bullishness on Dalal Street, according to analysts.
Meanwhile, the rupee ended at day's high at 73.02 per dollar on the back of strong infliows in the domestic equity market. It had opened higher at 73.11 per dollar as against the previous close of 73.17.
Tata Motors was top gainer among Sensex stocks; zooming over 6.2 per cent to Rs 274 on the back of heavy volumes. Other auto stocks were also in the limelight, with Maruti Suzuki and M&M gaining 2.8 per cent and 2.1 per cent respectively on the BSE. Besides, information technology stocks were booming all the way, with Wipro, Tech Mahindra, Infosys, TCS and HCL Technologies rising 1-3 per cent each.
On the flip side, Shree Cements, NTPC, GAIL, Grasim, Power Grid, ITC and HDFC Bank were among the losers.
On the IPO front, the initial public offering of Indigo Paints was subscribed 1.3 times on the first day of the bidding. The public issue received bids for 73.51 lakh equity shares against offer size of 55.18 lakh shares (excluding anchor book), the subscription data available on the exchanges showed.
The overall market breadth was marginally positive as 1,581 shares advanced and 1,429 declined on the BSE.