Equity markets once again surged on Tuesday as benchmark indices Sensex and Nifty closed at record-high levels for the second straight day. Analysts said the gains came on the back of a positive development in drug manufacturer Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine programme.
The 30-share BSE Sensex breached the 43,000-mark for the first time in history to finish at a record closing high of 43,277.65 – gaining 680.22 points. In intra-day trading, the index hit an all-time high of 43,316.44. The broader 50-share NSE Nifty also rose more than 1.30% to close at a high of 12,631.10.
On Monday, American pharmaceutical firm Pfizer and German biotechnology company BioNTech announced that their coronavirus vaccine was more than 90% effective in phase three clinical trials. The drug company’s stock gained as much as 19.46% on the BSE in intra-day trading, before closing 2.66% in the green.
“While there have been previous announcements of a vaccine, a company like Pfizer coming with such a development and with high efficacy is quite positive for markets,” Ajit Mishra, Vice President of Religare Broking, told Reuters.
The positive sentiment in the markets also spilled over into other sectors helping domestic airline and hotel stocks that have been hammered by the pandemic. Shares of private airline IndiGo’s owner InterGlobe Aviation rose 8.9%, while those of hotel operators Indian Hotels and Lemon Tree rose 14% and nearly 10%, respectively.
IndusInd Bank was the top gainer on Nifty, with the private lender’s stock rallying 9% to Rs 843. Other prominent stocks like Bajaj Finance, Bajaj Finserv, Larsen & Toubro, State Bank of India, HDFC, Tata Motors, ICICI Bank, Axis Bank, GAIL India and HDFC Bank also rose between 3% to 8%.
On Monday, too, Sensex and Nifty had finished trading at closing highs, tracking global markets and on hopes of ease in visa-related policies in the United States.