Persistent inflows of foreign capital into the equity market also boosted the market sentiment. Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) bought shares worth a net Rs 602.39 crore yesterday, as per provisional figures on the stock exchanges.
Sensex had resumed higher at 18,939.75 and shot up further to cross 19K level -- last seen on Jul 15, 2011 -- at 19,087.60 before quoting at 19,046.36 at 1030hrs, a net gain of 176.67 points or 0.94 per cent. The NSE 50-share Nifty also firmed up by 57.70 points, or 1.01 per cent, to 5,788.95 at 1030hrs.
Major gainers were BHEL (3.65 per cent), ICICI Bank (1.83 per cent), HDFC Bank (1.83 per cent), HDFC (1.80 per cent), Tata Motors (1.77 per cent) and Bharti Airtel (1.64 per cent).
In another round of big-ticket reforms, the Union Cabinet will consider today raising the FDI cap in the insurance sector to 49 per cent and opening the pension sector to foreign investment besides creation of a National Investment Board.
Asian stocks swung between gains and losses in the early trade as exporters rose on reports on US jobs and service industries beat economist estimates.