Indian stocks on Friday notched up their best gain in three weeks with benchmark Sensex surging 267 points and Nifty jumping by 75.45 points to hit new highs powered by a spurt in shares of lenders after Kotak Mahindra-ING Vysya announced India's biggest banking merger.
The mood was positive across global markets after US shares provided another record-breaking lead yesterday.
Expectations that government will come out with more reforms in Winter session of Parliament also influenced sentiments, brokers said, adding that speedy cabinet approvals for development of infrastructure gave a boost.
The local currency also scripted a pull-back after plunging to 9-month low of 62.25 against US dollar on Thursday.
Rupee was last trading at 61.78 levels.
Besides banking sector, capital goods, consumer durables, oil & gas, FMCG, auto, realty and power stocks helped the BSE index settle at 28,334.63 -- a new record at closing -- gaining 267.07 points, or 0.95%. Its previous record closing high was 28,177.88 reached on November 17.
Intra-day, it touched a new lifetime high of 28,360.66, bettering its previous record of 28,294.01 hit on November 19.
Heavyweights such as RIL, Hindalco, Cipla, BHEL, Hero Motocorp, ITC Ltd and L&T provided solid support.
The 50-scrip NSE Nifty went up by 75.45 points, or 0.90 per cent, to close at fresh high of 8,477.35, beating its earlier record high of 8,430.75 hit on November 17.
The index also touched lifetime high of 8,489.80, surpassing its previous record of 8,455.65 on November 19.
Kotak Mahindra Bank yesterday evening announced the buyout of ING Vysya Bank in an all-stock deal valued at Rs 15,000 crore, which is likely to set off consolidation moves.
Shares of Kotak Bank continued their rally, surging by 3.68%. ING Vysya counter ended 2% up. Other prominent gainers were Axis Bank, SBI, HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank. They gained in 1-3% band.Yes Bank rose 4%.
Smaller peers, like City Union Bank, DCB, Dhanlaxmi Bank, Federal Bank and Karnataka Bank, logged 2-5% gains.
Sectorally, the BSE Bankex rose 2.37%, the best among peers. It was followed by the Capital Goods that rose 1.32%, FMCG index 0.90%, Consumer Durables 0.84% and Oil & Gas index 0.86%.
Meanwhile, Foreign Portfolio Investors sold shares worth a net Rs 477.15 crore on Thursday, according to exchanges.