Shares logged gains for a second consecutive week on Thursday, aided by real estate and financials stocks, after the Reserve Bank of India, in a surprising decision, kept its key policy rate unchanged.
The Nifty 50 ended 0.24% higher at 17,599.15 and the S&P BSE Sensex rose 0.24% at 59,832.97, following a shaky start ahead of the RBI rate decision. Indian markets will be shut for a local holiday on Friday.
Citing "turmoil in global economy and unprecedented uncertainty in geopolitics", RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das maintained policy rates and added that the central bank remained watchful of the outlook and impact of policy measures on the broader economy.
"The RBI MPC (monetary policy committee) surprised with a pause," said Radhika Rao, senior economist, DBS Bank, Singapore and emphasised that the central bank will be "nimble to address evolving inflationary risks" going forward.
Nine of the 13 major sectoral indexes advanced, with rate-sensitive sectors climbing the most after the policy decision.
Financials rose nearly 0.5%; Bajaj Finance, Bajaj Finserv were among the top Nifty 50 gainers.
Realty index climbed nearly 3% and was the top sectoral gainer, with nine of the 10 constituents advancing.
RBI's decision to pause its rate hike is "indeed good for residential real estate market", according to Anuj Puri, Chairman of ANAROCK Group.
"This decision particularly gives relief to affordable and mid-segment home buyers who feared a possible rate hike today."
"Well-timed decision by MPC," said Parijat Agrawal, head of fixed income at Union Asset Management Company. But some analysts remained cautious.
"Although prices have moderated from 2022 levels, it will be important for RBI to monitor inflation and the banking sector turmoil," said Srikanth Subramanian, CEO, Kotak Cherry.