Shares of Adani Enterprises rose 23.15% from Rs. 382.35 to Rs. 470.25 on Thursday as investors interpreted the high turnout in Phase 3 of the ongoing Lok Sabha polls as a vote for BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.
The benchmark BSE Sensex was flat, rising 12.99 points or 0.06% to 22,715.33 during the day. Investors feel a Modi victory will benefit the Adani Group, whose promoter Gautam Adani is perceived to be close to the Gujarat chief minister.
Adani Enterprises, the flagship company of the Rs. 50,000-crore Adani Group, which has interests in ports, power, mining, logistics, gas distribution and trading, has zoomed 233% from Rs. 141.2 since September 13 last year when Modi was anointed the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate.
Since that day, the Sensex, too, has zoomed more than 15%, the rise mainly fuelled by inflows of more than $10 billion (Rs 60,000 crore) from foreign institutional investors, many of which have predicted a Modi victory. Such a result, they have said, will augur well for the Indian economy.
Shares of two other listed companies of the group, Adani Ports and Adani Power, have risen 43% and 55%, respectively, since September 13 for the same reason. On Thursday, however, Adani Ports rose by 5.68% and Adani Power by a much more modest 1.35%.
"This is a good opportunity to book profits and exit as this run-up in prices may not be sustainable," said K Vijaykumar, investment strategist, Geojit BNP Paribas, a leading investment bank.
The group has debts of about Rs. 60,000 crore and unless the business cycle turns, servicing this debt may become a challenge.
In the broader market, sentiment remained buoyed by IMF’s growth forecast on Wednesday took the Sensex to a new intra-day high of 22,792.49 before profit booking pared the gains.
The broad-based Nifty, too, hit a lifetime high of 6,819.05 before ending lower at 6,796.40, which is also a record close.
In addition to the Modi effect, brokers said India is considered a much more attractive investment destination compared to other emerging economies.
Reliance Industries rose to a three-year high of Rs. 970 after the company announced that it would sell gas to fertiliser companies at the new price of $8.3 per unit.
State Bank of India, Axis Bank, Tata Motors, Tata Power and HDFC were the other counters that saw a major rise on Thursday.
Experts expect the market to take a breather and move sideways till the elections end. "The Nifty has moved up by 14% in dollar terms and 9% in rupee terms since January, so the markets are now in an overbought situation. It is natural to book profits. I expect a 3-4% correction in the Nifty before the elections results," said Vijaykumar.