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Sensex, Nifty at record high on GST rollout hopes

business Updated: Mar 17, 2017 16:13 IST
Raj Kumar Ray

A man watches share price movement outside BSE, Mumbai(PTI photo)

Indian markets closed up on Friday on hopes of Goods and Services Tax roll out from July and tracking Asian bourses even as dollar continue to slide following Federal Reserve’s signal of a gradual rate hike and other major central bankers maintaining status quo.

The 30-share benchmark Sensex opened in the green and jumped 239 points or 0.8% to 29824.62 in early trade while Nifty breached 9,200-level to continue to climb higher to from its all-time high touched on Thursday.

The Sensex closed up 63 points or 0.2% at 29,649 while Nifty was marginally higer at 9,160.05.

ITC led the Sensex chart gaining 4.9% while Infosys was up 1%, Wipro 0.9%, Axis Bank 0.7%, Tata Steel and HDFC Bank 0.6% each.

Indian markets were buoyed up after the GST Council on Thursday cleared two pending legislation SGST and UT-GST, which along with three other draft laws CGST, IGST and Compensation Rule, takes India closer to roll out the country’s biggest tax reforms from July.

On Wednesday, Fed hiked key policy rates by 25 basis points or 0.25 percentage point to a range of 0.75-1.00% while China’s PBOC hiked rates, Bank of Japan and Bank of England maintained status quo.

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Global investors took comfort from the Fed stance of a slower pace of tightening going forward. Earlier, market experts were expecting rapid rate hikes that could have led to capital outflow from riskier assets and emerging markets.

Asian stocks were little changed in early trade but poised for recording the best week since September.

The MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.1% but was poised to end the week 3.3% higher, its biggest weekly increase since September.

The Nikkei closed down 0.35% but Hang Seng gained 0.1%, Kospi 0.7%, Strait Times 0.2% while Shanghai was down 1%.

US President Donald Trump’s budget outlined higher regulatory costs for the pharma sector and a cut in federal funding for medical research, dragging down shares of the sector.