Benchmark indexes in India have been hitting new highs, driven by an expanding middle class anxious to invest in stocks, The New York Times reports.
Last week, the largest initial public offering to date was launched, raising $2.4 billion for real estate development firm DLF.
“There has been a sea change in the way people are approaching savings and investments,” said Sanjay Prakash, head of HSBC’s mutual fund business in India. Since 2002, many people in India have become rich, Prakash said.
Nonetheless, some skeptics, pointing to a dangerous rise in day trading that now accounts for as much as 75% of daily volume, believe the markets in India are headed for a bubble. “It’s a bubble to the extent that we lack depth and breadth in the market,” said Pithvi Haldea, managing director of investment research firm Prime Database. The markets in India have become “more of a casino” where investors know little about what they are investing in.