The BSE Sensex surged nearly 250 points, while the broader Nifty regained the key 6,000 mark after a gap of nearly three months on Thursday. Markets rose on hopes that the Reserve Bank of India will cut key rates by at least 25 basis points on Friday.
The 50-share Nifty benchmark last traded above the 6,000 mark on February 04, 2013. The rupee had earlier a two-month high.
Traders say the cut in withholding tax on Indian bonds to 5 per cent from 20 per cent is continuing to boost sentiment for the rupee. The government cut tax rates for foreign investors on interest income from investments in government and corporate debt, hoping to attract more funding to bridge its current account deficit and polish its reformist credentials.
TCS, India's biggest outsourcer, led the gains on the 50-share Nifty. The stock rose 2.8 per cent, while Infosys, India's second biggest outsourcer advanced 1. per cent.
Rate sensitive stocks such as State Bank of India gained on hopes that the Reserve Bank of India will cut rates by at least 25 basis points tomorrow. SBI traded 2.1 per cent higher.
Auto stocks reacted to April sales. Utility vehicles maker M&M rose 2.4 per cent after April sales rose 2 per cent year-on-year.
Tata Motors traded lower after April sales declined 15 per cent year-on-year in April. The stock was the biggest loser on the Nifty. Energy major Cairn India and state-run utility Gail India also traded with over 1 per cent cuts.
FMCG major HUL fell 1.3 per cent on profit taking. The stock has surged since Unilever announced plans to pay up to $5.4 billion to raise its stake in its Indian subsidiary.
Shares in Bharti Airtel, India's biggest mobile carrier bounced back despite reporting disappointing numbers for the fourth quarter ending March 31, 2013. Bharti traded 0.3 per cent higher at Rs 319.20 after plunging 10 per cent in the pre-open session.
(With inputs from Reuters)