India Stocks Rise After Governor Das Flags Strong Recovery

India’s stock benchmark rose, following a volatile morning, after the central bank governor said the recovery in Asia’s third-largest economy has been stronger than expected.

The S&P BSE Sensex added 1% to 44,259.74 at the close in Mumbai, while the NSE Nifty 50 Index climbed by about the same magnitude, erasing earlier losses. Both gauges closed at record highs Tuesday. Today’s expiry of monthly futures and options contracts likely added to volatility.

Governor Shaktikanta Das reiterated that policy will remain accommodative to support growth, while cautioning a resurgence in coronavirus infections remains a risk to recovery.

“With Europe and some parts of the U.S. thinking about partial lockdowns, we are watching closely for a potential second wave in India that would hurt the economy and markets,”said Sanjeev Hota, head of research at Sharekhan Ltd. in Mumbai.

Metal producers drove gains later in the day, with the S&P BSE Metal index climbing 4.1%, the most out of the nineteen sector sub-indexes compiled by BSE Ltd.

“Once the economy is fully unlocked the government will need to spend a lot of money on infrastructure to generate employment. Investors are expecting that will lead to good demand for steel,” said Anita Gandhi, an investment adviser at Arihant Capital Markets Ltd. in Mumbai.

India’s equities have been boosted by net foreign fund purchases that are on course for a monthly record, while a report tomorrow may show India’s economy entered its first technical recession since at least 1996 last quarter, based on economists’ estimates.

See: Foreign Investors Pour Most Money Into India Stocks Ever: Chart

The yield on the benchmark 10-year government bond fell two basis points to 5.87%, while the rupee was little changed at 73.8900 against the U.S. dollar.

The Numbers

  • All but one of 19 sector sub-indexes compiled by BSE Ltd. rose, oil and gas being the lone decliner
  • Twenty-five Sensex shares rose, while five fell
    • HDFC Bank Ltd. contributed most to the index advance and added 1.7%; Tata Steel Ltd.’s 5.2% gain was the steepest

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