Mumbai: The Sensex gained for the seventh day and was on track for its best monthly performance since last September, closing 0.9% higher on Wednesday, as world equities gained on hopes the global economy is recovering and crude oil prices eased.
Investors, however, were sceptical about the momentum spilling over to the next month after the rally that has propelled Indian stocks to two-and-a-half-month closing highs.
Lenders led the charge on optimism over loan demand outlook on expectations the economy would continue to grow at a fast pace. The banking sector index gained 1.7%.
The 30-share Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) index rose 0.89%, or 169.38 points, to 19,290.18, its highest closing level since 12 January, with 23 of its components closing in the green.
Market breadth pointed to a broad-based rally, with gainers beating losers in a ratio of 2.6 to 1 in a volume of 322 million shares on BSE, higher than the 30-day daily average of 278 million shares.
State Bank of India jumped 3.3%, while leading lenders ICICI Bank Ltd and HDFC Bank Ltd firmed 0.7% and 1.4%, respectively.
The 50-share National Stock Exchange’s Nifty gained 0.9% to 5,787.65, closing above its 200-day moving average of 5,696.