Exit polls drive stocks high, Sensex jumps 216 pts

Exit poll findings giving the BJP an upperhand in winning Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh lit up stocks today, with the Sensex soaring 216 points, up for the second successive session.

The start was electrifying after a string of survey agencies predicted a clear win for the BJP in these two states, but the rally faltered as investors decided to wait for the counting, the results of which will start trickling in during market hours on December 18.

During the day, the Sensex scaled a high of 33,621.96 before finishing at 33,462.97, up 216.27 points, or 0.65 per cent, over the previous closing.

For the broader 50-share NSE Nifty, the close came in at at 10,333.25, a gain of 81.15 points, or 0.79 per cent.

Stocks rode on the rupee too, which hit a three-month high against the dollar during the day.

For the second straight week, the Sensex advanced, notching up a significant gain of 212.67 points, or 0.63 per cent. The Nifty was up 67.60 points, or 0.65 per cent, during the week.

Shares of metal, realty, consumer durables, auto, capital goods and banking hogged limelight on a flurry of buying by investors, said traders.

On two straight days, the Sensex has gained 410 points and the Nifty over 140 points.

"Exit poll predictions stating absolute majority for the ruling party in Gujarat and Himachal elections pushed stocks and indices to a higher opening, but the rally stalled thereafter as investors chose to wait for the results next week," said Anand James, Chief Market Strategist, Geojit Financial Services.

Banking stocks lived it up in anticipation of a positive outcome over the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), with the start of Parliament's winter session. The GST Council's meeting coming up on Saturday also kept the participants' interests alive.

There is also an assessment that advance tax numbers could provide a broad pointer to corporate performance and the growth trajectory.

All sectoral indices were in fine nick, driven by metal and realty that jumped by up to 2.82 per cent.

Mood turned bullish as provisional data showed that foreign funds made purchases of shares worth a net Rs 232.17 crore yesterday.

Muted macroeconomic numbers released earlier this week and a sluggish trend in rest of Asia and Europe following a sell-off on Wall Street over worries surrounding US tax cut proposals failed to hold back traders.

Back home, in the Sensex bloc, M&M was on the top, rising 3.56 per cent, followed by Coal India. Dr Reddy's, HDFC Bank, Adani Ports and Bajaj Auto hit a home run, too.

The metal index ran up the maximum by 2.82 per cent, followed by realty, consumer durables and auto.

With improvement in trading sentiment, buying activity spilled over to broader markets. BSE small-cap and mid-cap indices surged 1.38 per cent and 1 per cent, respectively.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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