Indian stocks rose as favourable initial results for a second Covid-19 vaccine fanned optimism of an exit from the pandemic.
The S&P BSE Sensex climbed 0.7% to 43,959.75 in Mumbai, while the NSE Nifty 50 Index advanced by the same magnitude. Both gauges extended gains from all-time high closing levels.
Strategists at brokerages including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and JPMorgan Asset Management see stocks in India’s $2.2 trillion market sustaining their record-breaking rally, in part because it’s more sensitive
to vaccine-related developments than other Asian
Moderna Inc’s vaccine was shown to be almost 95% effective in a late-stage clinical trial, another sign of progress in the hunt for tools to fight the pandemic that continues to spread in some parts of the world.
“The biggest uncertainty was the pandemic, so if there is a solution, there is naturally a big sigh of relief,” said Sudip Bandyopadhyay, who oversees investments at Inditrade Capital Ltd in Mumbai. “Investors are also watching for how fast any potential vaccines can be delivered and what the logistics will involve.”
India’s equities have also been helped by better than expected results for the September quarter, with 70% of the companies on the Nifty 50 index beating or matching analyst estimates.
While India’s daily coronavirus infections are down from a September peak, the country still has the world’s second highest number of cases after the US.
The yield on the benchmark 10-year government bond was little changed
at 5.88% while the rupee strengthened 0.2% to 74.4350 against the US
Thirteen of 19 sector sub-indexes compiled by BSE Ltd. advanced, led by a gauge of metal companies.