The market opened higher today after the four day holidays, including Mahavir Jayanti, as buoyant global cues overshadowed a steep 50 basis points hike in cash reserve ratio (CRR), announced by the Reserve Bank of India on April 17. The S&P CNX Nifty index scaled past the 5,000 level in early trade. Asian stocks surged on hopes the worst was over for the banking sector, following the top US lender Citigroup's announcement of a quarterly loss of USD 5.1 billion and plans to cut another 9,000 jobs.
Asian markets were trading higher today as Japan's Nikkei was up 1.64 per cent at 13,697.69 followed by Hong Kong's Hang Seng by 2.49 pc at 24,801.91, Singapore's Straits Times by 1.93 pc at 3,185.33 and South Korea's Seoul Composite by 1.58 pc at 1,799.22 advanced, which helped boost the Indian bourses, brokers pointed out. But Taiwan's Taiwan Weighted slipped by 0.08 pc at 9,067.47.
The 30-share BSE Sensex was up 258.13 points or 1.57 pc at 16,739.33 points at the end of the session. It opened with an upward gap of 130 points at 16,611.41 and advanced further to hit a high of 16,778.59 in early trade.
The broader based S&P CNX Nifty index of NSE also rose by 78.60 points or 1.59 pc and it crossed 5,000 level to end at 5,037.00. The select heavyweight stocks closed in green with hefty gains on the first day of the week. Nifty maintained its position well above the 5,000 mark. The cues were strong from Asian peers. All BSE indices closed in green.
Buying support was seen in metal, telecom, capital goods, technology, power, realty, FMCG and banking stocks. Midcap and small cap stocks outperformed the frontline indices. Market breadth was positive in the favour of advances.
Top gainers were Tata Steel, JP Associates, Wipro, Suzlon Energy, Idea Cellular and SAIL while losers - BHEL and Sterlite Industries. About 2116 shares have advanced, 736 shares declined, and 224 shares are unchanged.
The BSE indices were also in limelight as The BSE METAL index shot up by 553.56 points and closed firm at 15,214.69 points, followed by BANKEX index by 284.88 and closed at 8580.72 points, CG index by 276.91 points and ended at 13,669.39 points, SML CAP index by 221.47 and finished at 8752.83 points, PSU index by 158.36 points and closed at 7899.16 points, OULS&GAS index by 105.95 points and closed at 11,516.98 points, Medium Cap index by 146.87 points and ended at 6983.26 points and power index was also up by 37.07 and finished at 3281.29 points.
The NSE cash turnover was at Rs 13211.6 crore and the NSE F&O turnover was at Rs 40635.23 crore. The BSE cash turnover was Rs 5863.03 crore. Total market wide turnover was at Rs 59709.86 crore, brokers added.
The market breadth was strong. All the 30-members from the Sensex pack advanced. Software pivotals extended previous week's rally, boosted by good future guidance from IT bellwether Infosys Technologies last week.
India's third largest software services exporter Wipro surged 3.90 pc to Rs 477.10 and was the top gainer from Sensex pack. Wipro on April 18 reported 3 pc growth in its net profit to Rs 880 crore on 7.5 pc growth in topline to Rs 5,700 crore in Q4 March 2008 over Q3 December 2007.
Other IT pivotals, Infosys rose by 0.58 pc to Rs 1676.15 followed by Satyam Computer Services by 1.87 pc to Rs 477.70 and TCS by 2.40 pc to Rs 1,024.95.
Reliance Industries rose by 1.18 pc to Rs 2,668. Bharti Airtel rose by 3.25 pc to Rs 850 and Grasim Industries gained 2.80 pc to Rs 2640.05), edged higher from the Sensex pack.
Banking shares were trading higher despite hike in the cash reserve ratio. ICICI Bank moved up by 1.51 pc to Rs 851 followed by State Bank of India by 0.01 pc to Rs 1,683, and HDFC Bank by 0.54 pc to Rs 1,404).
The unscheduled CRR rate hike comes ahead of RBI's annual credit policy for 2008-09 to be unveiled on April 29. The RBI joined the government in battling the skyrocketing inflation. The wholesale price index rose 7.14 pc in the 12 months to April 5 2008, as per latest data. This was slower than the previous week's annual rise of 7.41 pc.
Titagarh Wagons was trading at Rs 654, a premium of 21.11 pc over its issue price of Rs 540. It listed at Rs 550 on BSE, a 1.85 pc premium over its issue price.
Meanwhile short-selling will be allowed from today, following a new set of guidelines and procedures, for both institutional and retail investors. The new system provides for borrowing shares for a seven-day period and using them to settle the sale of shares within a T+2 (trading day + two days) deadline.
Initially, short-selling will be permitted only in 227 stocks that are also traded in the futures and options segment, where deals can be entered into for making transactions at a future date. Later, the stock exchanges may decide to extend short-selling to a larger universe of stocks.
As per provisional data, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) bought shares worth a net Rs 597.53 crore on April 17. Domestic funds sold shares worth a net Rs 59.87 crore on that day.