(Reuters) – The BSE Sensex rose to a record high on Monday, surpassing its previous all-time highs hit last week as Sun Pharmaceutical Industries surged on broker upgrades after it agreed on Monday to acquire Ranbaxy Laboratories in a $3.2 billion deal.
Investors also regained appetite for blue-chips, especially interest rate-sensitive banks, after indexes had retreated from previous record highs hit on April 3.
Gains also tracked Asian stocks hitting a near six-month high on Wednesday. The MSCI-Asia Pacific excluding Japan index rose 1 percent adding to Tuesday’s rise of 0.6 percent, when Indian markets were closed for a local festival.
Shares remain supported by overseas investors, who bought Indian shares worth 7.03 billion rupees on Monday, provisional exchange data shows, totalling nearly $4.5 billion so far in 2014.
Trading was momentarily disrupted at the BSE Ltd stock exchange when share prices stopped updating for about 15-20 minutes in morning trade, multiple dealers said on Wednesday. A BSE spokesman said in the morning the exchange could not confirm whether any trading had been disrupted.
“India is benefiting from the fact that there are limited options to invest in emerging markets (EM) today and hence is getting a disproportionate share of the EM flows.
The BSE Sensex rose as much as 1.77 percent to an all-time high of 22,740.04, surpassing its previous lifetime high hit on April 3. The Nifty rose as much as 1.7 percent to a record high of 6,808.70.
The benchmark BSE Sensex ended 1.61 percent higher, while the broader Nifty closed 1.51 percent up, marking their record closing highs as well.
Sun Pharmaceutical (SUN.NS) rose 7.12 percent, its biggest single day percentage gain since May 2009, adding to its 2.9 percent rise on Monday, as brokers upgraded the stock after Sun agreed to buy Ranbaxy Laboratories Ltd (RANB.NS) for $3.2 billion.
Ranbaxy shares also rallied 4.9 percent on expectations of potential synergies after the deal with Sun Pharmaceutical.
However, the president of an Indian brokerage association is planning to formally request that India’s market regulator investigate trading in Ranbaxy Laboratories shares in the days leading up to its acquisition by Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.
Bank shares surged 3.5 percent on hopes for easing bond yields and better-than-expected inflation data next week, dealers said.
ICICI Bank (ICBK.NS) rose 4.2 percent, while HDFC Bank (HDBK.NS) surged 2.3 percent.
Among state-run banks, State Bank of India (SBI.NS_4″>SBI.NS) rose 3.3 percent and Bank of Baroda ended 5.6 percent higher.
In other blue-chips, Reliance Industries (RELI.NS) rose 1.9 percent while Tata Motors (TAMO.NS) ended 4.2 percent higher.
Bharat Forge Ltd (BFRG.NS) ended 1.4 percent higher after earlier rising to its highest level since April 2006 as Goldman Sachs upgraded the auto components maker to “neutral” from “sell” as part of its preference for cyclical shares over defensive ones.
However, software stocks fell on increasing caution, with Infosys Ltd (INFY.NS) kicking of the quarterly earnings season on April 15.