The Indian government's decision to approve two vaccines -- Serum Institute of India's Covidshield, and Bharat Biotech's Covaxin -- for restricted use in an emergency situation pushed indices to record high levels yet again on Monday. Moreover, manufactruing PMI, which remained in the expansion zone for the fifth straight month and stood at 56.4 in December, also let loose bulls on D-Street.
Extending the bull-run into tenth week, the benchmarks ended tad-bit lower than record highs but at fresh closing peaks nonetheless. The S&P BSE Sensex settled the day 308 points, or 0.64 per cent, higher at 48,177 levels on the BSE, after hittig a fresh liftime peak of 48,220.4 in the intra-day deals. Its NSE counterpart, Nifty50, ended above the 14,100-mark for the first time, at 14,133 levels, up 114 points or 0.8 per cent. In the intra-day trade, the index hit a record peak of 14,148.
In the broader market, the S&P BSE Midcap index hit a record high of 18,435.14 in intra-day session, surpassing previous high of 18,321, touched on January 9, 2018. It ended 1.4 per cent higher at 18,421.5 level. The S&P BSE SmallCap index, on the other hand, ended 1.37 per cent higher at 18,511 level.
On the sectoral front, Nifty Metal index jumped 5 per cent on the NSE today and hit an over 3-year high of 3,442 after global brokerage Jefferies said benign monetary policies, and potential stimulus measures provide strong backup to the metal sector. It also said that Indian metal firms should deliver a strong earnings rebound in FY22. Among individual stocks, Tata Steel, SAIL, Hindalco, and JSPL ended the day up to 8 per cent higher.
That apart, the Nifty IT index ended the day at a fresh closing peak of 25,110. Individually, Infosys, HCL Tech, and TCS hit their respective lifetime highs today.
On the downside, Nifty Bank, Nifty Private Bank, and Nifty Financial Services indices ended the day in the red.
Coming to other individual stocks, shares of Reliance Industries closed at day's high, up 0.18 per cent at Rs 1,991, on the BSE after the company said its telecom arm Reliance Jio has approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court urging it to direct the Punjab government to intervene and stop the continuous vandalism of its infrastructure in the state. In a petition filed earlier in the day, Reliance Industries said the company has not done any corporate or contract farming in the past, and has absolutely no plans to enter the business.
That apart, shares of Alkyl Amines Chemicals moved higher by 19 per cent to Rs 4,626 on the BSE in intra-day trade on Monday after the company said its Board of Directors would meet on February 2 to consider stock split and expansion plans. The stock settled around 15 per cent higher at Rs 4,451.
State-owned BEML also jumped 8 per cent to hit a high of Rs 1,050 on the BSE after the government invited bids for strategic divestment in the defence and engineering company. It closed 3.4 per cent higher.
World stock markets hit record highs on Monday as investors hoped the rollout of vaccines would ultimately lift a global economy decimated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The UK's National Health Service (NHS) on Monday began rolling out the Oxford University vaccine developed by AstraZeneca as protection against COVID-19. Consequently, European stocks open higher, with Britain's FTSE 100 gaining 1.75 per cent, Germany's DAX up 1.1 per cent, Spain's IBEX up 1.3 per cent and Italy's FTSE MIB rising 0.7 per cent.
Asian stock markets also gained, although Japan's Nikkei 225 index shed early gains, falling 0.4 per cent after the government said it was considering a state of emergency for Tokyo and three surrounding prefectures amid coronavirus concerns.
Meanwhile, Dow Jones Futures were last trading 165 points, or 0.5 per cent higher, indicating a green start for Wall Street later today.