Riding high on capital inflows, the benchmark Sensex today rose 77.96 points to end at new peak of 26,638.11 and logged the seventh straight month of gains in August as investors cheered steps taken by the Modi government to bring the back the economy on high growth path.
Gains were seen in blue chips amid volatility as monthly derivative contracts expired today and partcipants eyed GDP April-June quarter data scheduled for release tomorrow. Domestic markets appeared resilient to fag-end news of rising tension in Ukraine that trimmed gains in Asia and Europe. The BSE Sensex also hit life high of 26,674.38 during the session today. At closing level, the index surpassed its previous closing peak of 26,560.15 hit yesterday.
It extended winning run to sixth day in which it has gained 324 points. In 30-share Sensex, 17 stocks led by BHEL, L&T, ICICI Bank, ONGC, Wipro and GAIL gained while 12 declined.
Hero MotoCorp held unchanged. "Markets consolidated at higher levels during the week, ending the month with around 3 per cent gains. Several mid-caps found buyers and outperformed the broader indices," said Dipen Shah, Head - PCG Research, Kotak Securities. Markets will be closed tomorrow on account of Ganesh Chaturthi. Thursday was the last trading day of this week and also the month in which Sensex has gained over 743 points. This also marks the seventh straight monthly gain. The NSE Nifty barometer gained 18.30 points, or 0.23 per cent, to settle at record 7,954.35, breaching its previous peak of 7,936.05 reached yesterday. Intra-day, it touched a high of 7,967.80, just missing the life high of 7,968.25 hit on August 25.
The Sensex and the Nifty have gained about 26 per cent this year so far, the most among biggest global indices. Rail stocks were in demand after the government notified liberalised FDI norms for the sector. Shares of Texmaco Rail, Titagarh Wagons and Kalindee Rail Nirman rose. Sectorally, the BSE Capital Goods sector index gained the most by rising 1.43 per cent, followed by Oil & gas index 1.06 per cent, FMCG index rose 0.74 per cent. The thematic PSU index jumped 0.32 per cent. Meanwhile, Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPIs) bought shares worth a net Rs 290.18 crore yesterday.