The Nifty hit a record high on Thursday on continued hopes for global monetary stimulus measures, while ITC Ltd surged to a six-month high on media reports the government was rethinking a potential ban on the sale of loose cigarettes.
Bets that European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi would open the door wider to U.S.-style money printing pinned the euro at a two-year low and lifted world shares on Thursday, as China and Japan also geared up for more stimulus.
Sentiment also remains largely positive on hopes for an improving economy and after the Reserve Bank of India said it could cut interest rates early next year provided inflationary pressures do not reappear and the government controls the fiscal deficit.
“We expect further reforms by the government and remain positive on the domestic infrastructure and cyclical sectors over the medium-to-long term,” said Dipen Shah, head of private client group research at Kotak Securities.
The government’s disinvestment plans over the next couple of months will be closely watched, Shah added.
The broader Nifty ended up 0.31 percent at 8,564.40 after rising to an all-time high of 8,626.95.
The benchmark Sensex closed 0.42 percent higher at 28,562.82.
Index heavyweight ITC led the gains, closing up 5.5 percent after earlier marking its highest intraday level since May.
Other consumer stocks also rose. Hindustan Unilever ended higher 0.7 percent, Britannia Industries rose 1.9 percent and Bata India Ltd ended 1.4 percent higher.
Defence-related stocks continued their winning streak after the government notified foreign investment in the sector at up to 49 percent. (bit.ly/1AanjrR)
Astra Micro Wave Products closed up 1.9 percent, while Bharat Electronics Ltd surged 11.3 percent.
Pharmaceutical stocks also rose on portfolio churning towards defensives amid a string of record highs. Lupin ended up 0.8 percent, while Cipla gained 1.4 percent.
Among the decliners, telecom stocks fell after Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani quoted CEO of U.S. wireless provider Verizon as saying the telecom business will be driven by technology, not by voice, SMS tariffs, traders said.
Idea Cellular ended down 2.6 percent, while Bharti Airtel lost 2.3 percent.
Steel Authority of India lost 0.5 percent ahead of the government’s stake sale in the company on Friday.