Sensex, Nifty edge up ahead of RBI rate decision

Indian stocks rose slightly on Thursday, with benchmark indices closing at an all-time high, ahead of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) monetary policy decision, as the central bank is widely seen keeping key interest rates steady.

The Nifty 50 super index was up 0.12% at 18,749.60 as of 9:49 AM IST, while the S&P BSE Sensex was up 0.12% at 63,220.20.

The RBI interest rate decision is due to be announced at 10:00 am IST and the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is expected to leave the repurchase rate at 6.50% for the second consecutive meeting.

The Reserve Bank of India has raised the repurchase rate by a total of 250 basis points since May 2022 to keep inflation in check, before opting to pause at the previous meeting.

India’s retail inflation eased to an 18-month low of 4.70% in April, well below the RBI’s higher tolerance level. Economists expect the next few readings to be comfortably below the 6% threshold, boosting hopes of a pause in the price cycle.

Six of the 13 major sector indices declined, with information technology (IT) and real estate each losing 0.4%.

Metals rose 1%, buoyed by a 2.5% gain in JSW Steel after Investec upgraded the stock to “buy” from “hold.”

Two-wheeler maker Hero MotoCorp jumped more than 2% after reports said the company plans to release the highest number of premium bikes ever in fiscal 2014.

JSW Steel and Hero MotoCorp were among the top 50 Nifty gainers.

Nifty 50 and Sensex are both 1% below all-time highs. Smaller and wider peaks are already setting record highs.

“The recent increase in the markets has been broad based and supported by strong FII inflows and stable macroeconomic indicators,” said Anita Gandhi, Director at Arihant Capital Markets. She warned that the continuation of the monsoons would be a decisive factor for the continuation of the ongoing march.