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Sensex hits 2-year high, Nifty scales fresh closing peak as Fed's dovish rate hike outlook buoy sentiment

Mumbai: The prospects of a gradual approach to US rate hike gave markets more reason to rejoice as the Sensex Thursday added 188 points to close at a 2-year high of 29,586 and the Nifty hit a new peak of 9,154, buoyed by strong capital flows.

The NSE index rose to a record 9,158.45 (intra-day) before ending the day at a new closing high of 9,153.70, up 68.90 points, or 0.76 percent, breaching its previous record of 9,087 on 14 March.

The Federal Reserve, as expected, hiked the benchmark interest rate by a quarter percentage point, but gave a more dovish outlook for future hikes and painted a positive picture of the world's largest economy.

The 30-share BSE index settled higher by 187.74 points, or 0.64 percent, at 29,585.85. This is the highest closing since 29 January, 2015 when it closed at 29,681.77.

The gauge had shed 44.52 points in the previous session.

 Sensex hits 2-year high, Nifty scales fresh closing peak as Feds dovish rate hike outlook buoy sentiment


Investors continued to soak in BJP's superlative show in UP and Uttarakhand, which is seen as giving an impetus to the government's reforms drive.

Continued foreign inflows have sparked a rally in the rupee, which hit an over 16-month high of 65.22 (intra-day) against the dollar, accelerating buying activity further.

"Though the record peaks have kept the investors nervy, the prospects of a gradual US rate hike looks to have improved the risk appetite, which is also reflected in the marked decline in volatility. This should also mean, save a negative surprise from monsoon forecast, Q4 numbers should prompt investors to be forward looking," said Anand James, Chief Market Strategist, Geojit Financial Services.

The buoyancy reflects a firming trend in Asia and Europe, tracking overnight gains in the US after the Federal Reserve went for a rate increase.

Buying activity was so strong that all sectoral indices, led by metal and infrastructure, ended in the green.

Second-tier stocks attracted heavy buying interest from retail investors and notched up handsome gains. The BSE midcap and smallcap indices closed up 1.55 percent and 1.07 percent, respectively.

Hefty buying by foreign institutional investors, the main market mover, was seen across the board. FIIs bought shares worth Rs 1,141.13 crore yesterday, as per provisional data.

Key indices in China, Hong Kong and Japan rose up to 2.08 percent. In Europe, major shares ran up in early session.

Adani Ports jumped maximum (4.73 percent). Tata Steel surged 4.30 percent amid reports that the company will finalise decision on UK business merger by May.

Other major Sensex gainers were Bajaj Auto (2.31 percent), Asian Paints (2.23 percent), Infosys (1.62 percent), Tata Motors (1.49 percent) and HDFC (1.47 percent).

However, Hero MotoCorp dropped by 1.32 percent, followed by Bharti Airtel, RIL and Coal India.

The metal index went up 2.84 percent. Power, consumer durables, infrastructure and capital goods too advanced.

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Updated Date: Mar 16, 2017 17:24:12 IST