Stock markets today ended the week with a positive spin after strong auto sales and encouraging August manufacturing data helped investors put behind the disappointing GDP numbers.
Strengthening for the third day, the benchmark Sensex went up 162 points to end at 31,892.23, a three-week high, while the Nifty closed short of 10,000. It was eighth weekly gain in nine for both the Sensex and the Nifty, surging 296.17 points, or 0.93 per cent, and 117.35 points, or 1.19 per cent, respectively.
Automobile manufacturers led by Maruti Suzuki posted good passenger vehicles (PV) sales growth in August riding on strong consumer sentiment ahead of the festive season.
In a related development, the Nikkei Markit India manufacturing PMI rebounded to 51.2 in August from a low of 47.9 in the previous month, signalling a turnaround from July's GST-related contraction.
Right from the word go, the 30-share BSE index remained above the base line till the very close as it settled up 161.74 points, or 0.51 per cent, at 31,892.23 -- a level last seen on August 8.
The NSE Nifty too ended on a high, up 56.50 points, or 0.57 per cent, at 9,974.40 after shuttling between 9,983.45 and 9,909.85 during the day.
India's GDP growth slumped to a three-year low of 5.7 per cent during April-June -- lagging China for the second straight quarter -- as manufacturing slowed ahead of the GST launch amid demonetisation effect, according to official data released after trading hours yesterday.
Risk aversion faded after speculation that the RBI may announce a cut in rates at its next policy meet in October to accelerate growth, lifting interest-sensitive stocks of auto and realty sectors, analysts said.
Beginning of the September futures and options (F&O) series paved the way for creation of fresh bets, which nudged participants to buy more, they added.
Dr Reddy's ticked all the right boxes and was the top scorer with a gain of 9.75 per cent after a settlement agreement with the Nasdaq-listed Vivus Inc yesterday.
Auto stocks led by Ashok Leyland, Maruti Suzuki, Tata Motors, Hero MotoCorp, Bajaj Auto, TVS Motors, Eicher Motors and M&M rose up to 5.42 per cent, mainly on the back of better-than-expected August sales figures. Asian Paints, Tata Steel, ONGC, Kotak Bank and Axis Bank contributed to the Sensex rally.
Foreign institutional investors (FIIs), who had been in net selling mode, changed track and bought shares worth Rs 77.58 crore yesterday. DIIs too bought shares worth Rs 509.71 crore, according to provisional data.
Asian shares swung both ways. Europe got off to a good start. Broader markets such as mid-cap and small-cap indices were ahead of the Sensex by adding 0.95 per cent and 0.78 per cent, respectively.
On the sectoral front, realty was a clear winner, up 2.59 per cent, followed by auto at a distant 1.94 per cent and metal 1.86 per cent.