Stocks rallied on Friday to 14-month highs as the UPA government bit the bullet on fiscal reforms with a bold diesel price hike. More ballast came to the market’s winds in an overnight Fed stimulus that would pump in $40 billion every month into the US economy. This is expected to spread across to global markets.
The market got more reason for cheer after trading closed, setting up an optimistic mood for next week as the government cheered investors by allowing foreign direct investment (FDI) in the retail and aviation sectors. The market was already anticipating a booster dose for FDI.
The 30-share Sensex of the Bombay Stock Exchange jumped 443 points or 2.5% to touch 18,464.27, capping an eight-day rally. The broader 50-share Nifty of the National Stock Exchange gained 142 points or 2.6% to touch 5,577.65.
Oil and gas stocks jumped 2.9 % as the government increased the price of diesel by R 5 a litre, putting more money into their balance sheets.
"Investors had factored in the FDI impact in the past ten days trading but still the Sensex could see a jump of around 150 to 200 points on Monday and would settle down around that level," said Rikesh Parekh, vice-president, equities, Motilal Oswal. He said the next trigger would be the RBI's monetary policy review on Monday.
Realty, metal, bank, consumer goods and automobile stocks outperformed oil and gas stocks on Friday.
Gold raises the bar, yet again
Gold prices on Friday touched an all time high in the domestic spot market on global cues. Gold prices touched Rs. 32,900 per 10 grams just shy of the Rs. 33,000 mark per 10 grams on Friday.
In the international market, meanwhile, the yellow metal touched a 6-month high at $1,778 an ounce on Friday after the US announced a third round of quantitative easing. In the domestic market, jewellers were also buying the metal with expectation that the demand for gold would increase due to the festival and marriage season in the second half of the year.
Silver too jumped by Rs. 1,330 to touched Rs. 63,665 per kilogram on Friday.
On the Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX) the price of the gold for October futures touched Rs. 32,326 per 10 grams.
- HTC, Mumbai