Mumbai, Sep 14 (IANS) A benchmark index of Indian equities markets surged 439 points late Thursday afternoon following a worldwide rally after the US Federal Reserve announced a new stimulus plan to revive growth in the world's largest economy.
The government's decision to hike diesel price and cut subsidies for cooking gas also helped stocks move up. Realty, metal and banking scrips were the best performers.
The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened at 18,284.75 points, was ruling at 18,459.94 points, 438.78 points or 2.43 percent up from its previous day's close at 18,021.16 points.
The Sensex touched a high of 18,480.25 and a low of 18,284.75 points in intra-day trade. The BSE midcap index was up 72.80 points while the smallcap index was 48.25 points high.
The wider 50-scrip S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange was also ruling 2.58 percent up at 5,575.50 points.
On the sectoral front, the BSE realty index was up 73.30 points while metal index was up 425.63 points and banking index was up 481.23 points.
Jindal Steel was the biggest Sensex gainer and was trading high 8.76 percent at Rs.372.
Other major gainers were Hindalco Inds, up 7.54 percent at Rs.117.60; ICICI Bank, up 5.50 percent at Rs.1,011.45; SBI, up 5.44 percent at Rs.1,969.10; and Sterlite Inds, up 5.41 percent at Rs.99.45.
There were only five Sensex losers -- Dr Reddy's Lab, down 0.80 percent at Rs.1,759.90; ITC, down 0.69 percent at Rs.267.85; TCS, down 0.52 percent at Rs.1,408; NTPC, down 0.26 percent at Rs.170.40; and Cipla, down 0.14 percent at Rs.369.05.
Among other Asian markets, Japan's Nikkei closed up 1.83 percent while Hong Kong's Hang Seng closed 2.90 percent higher. Shanghai's composite index closed up 0.64 percent.
The European markets were trading in green too. France's CAC was up 1.90 percent, while Germany's DAX was up 1.34 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 was trading 1.38 percent higher.