T HE SENSEX makes news every year. But 2007 was special. This was the year when the balance of economic power shifted decisively towards Asia in general and India in particular.
That might sound odd, because in real terms, the economies of the world's most developed nations are still far larger than India's. The key difference is potential.
Stock markets the world over often make history, but they never look back at it. That is because equity markets - and the investors who put money into them - look to the future, not the past. Today's investment decision is triggered by what is expected to happen tomorrow.
That is why the Sensex stopped being merely India's most-watched number. It became one of the world's most closely tracked stock market indices instead.
In 2007, the Sensex became only the world's 20th stock market index to cross the 20,000point figure. In fact, it currently has a staggering 7,000-point lead over the granddaddy of all stock market indices - the New York Stock Exchange's Dow Jones In dustrials. It was a long, slow journey for the Sensex, as India struggled to shed its socialist baggage and took its first, hesitant steps down the hard road of reforms. It took 20 years for the Sensex to go from 1,000 to 10,000 points. As the economy took off, though, the trudge became a sprint. It took only 20 months to notch up the next 10,000 points, of which close to 7,000 points came in 2007, including a spectacular 3000-point charge in October.
With overseas markets taking a hammering because of the mortgage crisis, Indian stocks are now on the buy list of most global investors. Foreign in vestors alone have pumped in over $ 16 billion into Indian stocks. And inflows show no signs of drying up.
Oh, and Indian investors are not doing too badly, either. The 30 stocks, which make up the BSE Sensex, are currently valued at Rs 2,838,000 crore enough to buy 47,300 Boeing 777 Dreamliners! Sometimes, dreams do come true.
15k Sensex crossed the magical figure of 15,000 on July 6, almost seven months after scaling 14,000 16k Shortly after trading opened for the day on September 19, market crossed 16,000. Sensex created another record, for the biggest ever single-day gain - of 654 points 17k Just a week after the dizzying feat of 16k, sensex shot across 17k this was the fastest 1,000 ever logged in the history of the Indian stock market. The date: September 26 18k Sensex was now rocking. On October 9, it crossed 18k and created several records. One of them being the biggest single-day gain of 789 points 19k This was the quickest thousand scored by the market. It crossed 19k on October 15, only four working days after going over the 18k mark 20k A red letter day for Sensex. On October 29, it zoomed past an eye-popping 20k. But it did not end the day there slipped back to 19,977 points. But it had crossed the magical 20k and that's all that mattered.