India’s Sensex Index Caps Sixth Straight Week of Gains

India’s benchmark equity index completed its sixth consecutive week of gains as foreign investors continued to load up on local stocks.

The S&P BSE Sensex climbed 0.3% to 46,099.01, pushing its advance this week to 2.3%. That’s the longest streak of weekly gains for the index since July. The NSE Nifty 50 Index rose by a similar magnitude and also completed a sixth consecutive week of increases.

Net foreign investment in local stocks this year, at nearly $19 billion through Dec. 9, is the highest since 2013. Global funds bought 22.6 billion rupees of stocks on Thursday, according to provisional data from the exchanges. India and China are the only two economies in Asia that have positive equity inflows this year.

With both major stock gauges up 11% on the year, setting a series of new record highs since last month, some see reason for caution.

“The larger the build-up in the market, the greater are the risks,” said Chokkalingam G, chief investment officer at Equinomics Research & Advisory Ltd. in Mumbai. “We are cautiously treading this rally and are biased toward large cap and defensive stocks.”

The rupee was little changed at 73.65 per U.S. dollar, while the yield on 10-year government bonds rose four basis points to 5.96%.

The Numbers

  • Fourteen of 19 sector indexes compiled by BSE Ltd. rose, led by a gauge of utilities
  • ICICI Bank Ltd. contributed the most to the Sensex advance, increasing 1.6%, while Oil and Natural Gas Corp Ltd. had the largest gain, rising 5.7%

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