India stocks soar as polls point to Modi election win

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Indian shares soared 3.75 percent on Monday -- the biggest jump in nearly six years -- as markets greeted exit polls indicating conservative Prime Minister Narendra Modi secured a new term in a general election.

The Bombay Stock Exchange’s Sensex index ended at a record high 39,352 points while the Indian rupee also strengthened to 69.63 to the dollar from its Friday closing of 70.22.

Traders called the polls boost to Modi’s right-wing government a vital sign of stability for one of the world’s fastest-growing major economies.

“This ends a significant political uncertainty,” said Sujan Hajra, an economist at Anand Rathi securities in Mumbai, who described Modi as a “market reformer”.

“The Modi government with its second term will continue with its policies and it is easier for businesses and traders to carry on with their expansion or investment plans which already have been initiated.”

Others echoed his view.

“These exit polls have given a high level of comfort for investors and the governmental policies initiated in the first term will only gain momentum,” said Amar Singh of Angel Broking.

Exit polls indicating Modi had won a second term were released late Sunday after the seventh and final round of voting in the marathon election. The official count starts Thursday.

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