The benchmark Sensex recouped most of the previous session losses to end 102.32 points up near record highs powered by gains in HDFC, TCS and Sun Pharma shares ahead of industrial output and retail inflation data release due later on Thursday.
Smallcap and midcap stocks were also seen back in demand, helping sentiments improve, said equity dealers.
The BSE Sensex resumed higher at 25,597.21 and firmed up further to a high of 25,611.32 on initial buying support. It declined afterwards to 25,409.69, before settling at 25,576.21 — showing a rise of 102.32 points, or 0.40 per cent.
On Wednesday, the bluechip index had lost 109.80 points after hitting a new lifetime high of 25,735.87.
Brokers said the undercurrent remained strong on continued fund inflow on hopes of reforms and economic revival after the Narendra Modi-led government took charge.
They said investors picked up fundamentally strong stocks amid expectations of favourable IIP (Index of Industrial Production) and Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation numbers to be released in the evening.
The Sensex surge was led by HDFC, HDFC Bank, TCS and Sun Pharma that gained between 1.2-2.8 per cent.
Bharti Airtel came under pressure and lost 3.57 per cent to Rs 341.55 on reports that a foreign brokerage has downgraded the stock. Heavyweight RIL fell 0.63 per cent.
Infosys stock, cynosure of all eyes, moved between Rs. 3,298 and Rs. 3,120.65 before ending 0.38 per cent down at Rs. 3,166.60. The company before trading announced the appointment of Vishal Sikka as CEO and Managing Director.
Out of 30-Sensex shares, 20 ended higher and nine led by Axis Bank, BHEL, Coal India, ICICI Bank and Sesa Sterlite finished in negative zone. Tata Power ended steady.
Meanwhile, the NSE 50-share Nifty rose 23.05 points, or 0.30 per cent, to end at 7,649.90. It had crossed the 7,700 points level for the first time in trade.
Globally, Asian indices ended lower but there was a higher opening in European markets. Investors await data on US retail sales and jobless claims.