(Bloomberg) — Stock investors are taking heart from India’s efforts to re-open its economy, even as the nation continues on a trajectory to overtake the U.S. as the country with the most coronavirus cases.
The S&P BSE Sensex’s has rallied almost 12% since hitting a more than two-month low on Sept. 24, the best performance among the world’s national equity benchmarks, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It is less than 2% away from wiping out its losses for the year.
A Jefferies Financial Group Inc. model tracking economic recovery last week showed activity in India is already at 93% of pre-Covid levels. The nation is set to further relax restrictions on gatherings of people and allow schools, multiplexes and entertainment parks to reopen in some areas from Oct. 15.
“A higher-than-expected level of economic reopening, coupled with various steps from policy makers, creates an upside risk for GDP and earnings estimates, said Sameer Kalra, a strategist at Mumbai-based Target Investing. “There is a good chance that third-quarter GDP shows a recovery and then the Sensex hits a record by December,” he said.
The Sensex capped its best week since early June on Friday as the central bank signaled more policy easing ahead and announced a slew of liquidity steps to support the economy. In the past few days, data showing a mild improvement in some economic indicators and optimism over earnings results from a few major firms have also helped boost investor sentiment.
Maruti Suzuki India Ltd., the biggest carmaker, posted its highest monthly sales in two years in September as an end to a nationwide lockdown prompted dealerships to stock up ahead of a festive season.
“India has started to outperform EM more