A Complete Guide on what is Nifty and Sensex: Have you ever heard of the name Dalal street or the D-Street on any market news channel or financial magazine? I’m sure, you definitely would have heard of it, if you’re even remotely involved in the finance world.

Well, Dalal Street in Mumbai, India is the address of the Bombay Stock Exchange, the biggest stock exchange in India, and several related financial firms and institutions. When the Bombay Stock Exchange was moved to this new location at the intersection of Bombay Samāchār Marg and Hammam Street, the street next to the building was renamed Dalal Street.

In Hindi Dalal means “a broker”. The term “Dalal Street” is used in the same way as “Wall Street” in the U.S., referring to the country’s major stock exchanges and overall financial system.

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What is Nifty and Sensex?

In order to understand what is Nifty and Sensex, you need to understand the Indian stock exchanges first. Now, let’s discuss the two major stock exchanges in India i.e the ‘Bombay stock exchange’ and the ‘National stock exchange’ along with their indexes.

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1. Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE)

  1. Bombay stock exchange is an Indian stock exchange located at Dalal Street, Mumbai, Maharashtra.
  2. It was established in 1875 and is Asia’s oldest stock exchange.
  3. It is the world’s fastest stock exchange, with a median trade speed of 6 microseconds.
  4. As of Feb 2022, 5,246 companies trading on the BSE were worth over Rs 264 Lakh Crore (Rs 26,451,334.95 Cr), as per data available on the exchange.

What is an Index? Since there are thousands of company listed on a stock exchange, hence it’s really hard to track every single stock to evaluate the market performance at a time. Therefore, a smaller sample is taken which is the representative of the whole market. This small sample is called Index and it helps in the measurement of the value of a section of the stock market. The index is computed from the prices of selected stocks.


Sensex, also called BSE 30, is the market index consisting of 30 well-established and financially sound companies listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE).

  1. The 30 companies are selected on the basis of free-float market capitalization.
  2. These are different companies from the different sectors representing a sample of large, liquid, and representative companies.
  3. The base year of Sensex is 1978-79 and the base value is 100.
  4. It is an indicator of market movement.
  5. If the Sensex goes down, this tells you that the stock price of most of the major stocks on the BSE has gone down. If Sensex goes up, it means that most of the major stocks in BSE went up during the given period.

For example, suppose the Sensex is 49,130 today. If Sensex drops to 48,450 tomorrow, it means that the majority of the 30 companies are not performing well i.e. their share price is falling. 

— List of 30 Companies Consisting of Sensex

Here is the Sensex 30 Companies- Constituents of Sensex 30 by Weights – 2022

1Reliance IndIntegrated Oil & Gas13.36%
2HDFC BankBanks9.65%
3ICICI BankBanks8.78%
4InfosysIT Consulting & Software8.70%
5HDFCPersonal Products6.51%
6TCSIT Consulting & Software5.13%
7Kotak Mahindra BankBanks4.23%
8ITCCigarettes,Tobacco Products4.10%
9HINDUSTAN UNIHousing Finance3.72%
10Larsen & ToubroConstruction & Engineering3.37%
11State Bank of IndiaBanks3.11%
12Axis BankBanks3.05%
13Bajaj FinanceHolding Companies2.63%
14Bharti AirtelTelecom Services2.62%
15Asian PaintsFurniture,Furnishing,Paints2.18%
16Maruti SuzukiCars & Utility Vehicles1.85%
17Mahindra & MahindraCars & Utility Vehicles1.78%
18HCL TechnologiesIT Consulting & Software1.54%
19Titan CoOther Apparels & Accessories1.53%
20Sun PharmaPharmaceuticals1.49%
21Bajaj FinservFinance (including NBFCs)1.22%
22Tata SteelIron & Steel/Interm.Products1.19%
23UltraTech CementCement & Cement Products1.18%
24Power GridElectric Utilities1.13%
25NTPCElectric Utilities1.12%
26NestlePackaged Foods1.07%
27Tech MahindraIT Consulting & Software1.03%
28WiproIT Consulting & Software0.96%
29IndusInd BankBanks0.95%
30Dr Reddy’s LabsPharmaceuticals0.84%

2. National Stock Exchange (NSE)

The National Stock Exchange (NSE) is the leading stock exchange in India, located in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India. It was started to end the monopoly of the Bombay stock exchange in the Indian market.

  1. NSE was established in 1992 as the first demutualized electronic exchange in the country.
  2. It was the first exchange in the country to provide a modern, fully automated screen-based electronic trading system that offered an easy trading facility to investors spread across the length and breadth of the country.
  3. NSE has a total market capitalization of more than US$ 3.06 trillion, making it the world’s 9th-largest stock exchange as of April 2018.
  4. NSE’s index, the NIFTY 50, is used extensively by investors in India and around the world as a barometer of the Indian capital markets.
  5. The NSE remained the world’s largest derivatives exchange for the second consecutive year in 2020 in terms of the number of contracts traded.


BSE and NSE – Why are there two Stock Exchanges in India?

— NIFTY or Nifty 50

Nifty, also called NIFTY 50, is the market index consisting of 50 well-established and financially sound companies listed on the National Stock Exchange of India (NSE).

  1. The base year is taken as 1995 and the base value is set to 1000.
  2. Nifty is calculated using 50 large stocks that are actively traded on the NSE.
  3. The 50 companies are selected on the basis of free-float market capitalization.
  4. Here, the 50 top stocks are selected from 24 different sectors.
  5. Nifty is owned and managed by India Index Services and Products (IISL)


Also read: Nifty 50 fact sheet

— Nifty 50 Companies – Constituents of Nifty 50 by Weights – 2022

Sl NoCompanyIndustryWeightage
1Reliance Industries Ltd.OIL & GAS12.94%
3Infosys Ltd.IT7.73%
5Housing Development Finance Corporation Ltd.FINANCIAL SERVICES5.68%
6Tata Consultancy Services Ltd.IT4.89%
7Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd.FINANCIAL SERVICES3.53%
8ITC Ltd.FMCG3.46%
9Hindustan Unilever Ltd.FMCG2.88%
10Larsen & Toubro Ltd.CONSTRUCTION2.72%
11State Bank Of IndiaFINANCIAL SERVICES2.58%
13Bharti Airtel Ltd.TELECOM2.39%
14Bajaj Finance Ltd.FINANCIAL SERVICES2.08%
15Asian PaintsCONSUMER DURABLES1.76%
16Maruti Suzuki India Ltd.AUTOMOBILE & AUTO COMPONENTS1.63%
17Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd.AUTOMOBILE & AUTO COMPONENTS1.51%
18HCL Technologies Ltd.IT1.49%
19Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.HEALTHCARE1.30%
22Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd.POWER1.05%
23Tata Steel Ltd.METALS & MINING1.01%
24NTPC Ltd.POWER0.98%
25Bajaj Finserv Ltd.FINANCIAL SERVICES0.96%
26UltraTech Cement Ltd.CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS0.94%
27Tech Mahindra Ltd.IT0.91%
28Nestle India Ltd.FMCG0.90%
29Wipro Ltd.IT0.89%
30Oil And Natural Gas Corporation Ltd.OIL & GAS0.85%
31JSW Steel Ltd.METALS & MINING0.79%
32Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd.HEALTHCARE0.77%
33IndusInd Bank Ltd.FINANCIAL SERVICES0.75%
34HDFC Life Insurance Co.FINANCIAL SERVICES0.74%
35Grasim Industries Ltd.CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS0.72%
36Cipla Ltd.HEALTHCARE0.72%
37Hindalco Industries Ltd.METALS & MINING0.71%
38Adani Port and Special Economic Zone Ltd.SERVICES0.70%
39SBI Life Insurance Co.FINANCIAL SERVICES0.70%
41Divi’s Laboratories Ltd.HEALTHCARE0.67%
42Tata Consumer Products Ltd.FMCG0.61%
43Britannia Industries Ltd.FMCG0.59%
44Coal India LtdOIL & GAS0.56%
46Appolo HospitalHEALTHCARE0.54%
49Bharat Petroleum Corp. Ltd.OIL & GAS0.43%

Quick Note: If you want to research more about the fundamentals of these companies, you can go our Stock research and analysis PORTAL here.

Nifty and Sensex Movements Meaning

Sensex and Nifty are both indicators of market movement. If the Sensex or Nifty goes up, it means that most of the stocks in India went up during the given period.  With respect to NIFTY and NSE, we can say that:

  1. If the Nifty goes up, this means that the stock price of most of the major stocks on the NSE has gone up.
  2. On the other hand, if nifty goes down, this tells you that the stock price of most of the major stocks on NSE has gone down.

The same is true in the case of Sensex. Moreover, when Sensex/Nifty goes high, it shows the economic growth of the country. Else if it keeps declining, it might mean a slow-down or depression.

For example, during the Indian recession of 2008-09, the Sensex fell over 12000 points (-60%). The fall in the Sensex was analogous to the recession. Meaning, that people were selling their shares, and an economic crisis in the country.

Similarly, during the covid19 pandemic, the market crashed by over 33% within a month, which was again in relation to the deteriorating economic scenario in India and the world.

sensex chart last 25 years economic crisis and pandemic 

Also read:

Importance of Market Index

  1. The market indexes are the barometer for market behavior. It gives a general idea of whether most of the stocks have gone up or gone down.
  2. Often, Market Index is used as a benchmark portfolio performance.
  3. It is used as a reflector of investors’ sentiments.
  4. Market indexes are used for the sorting and comparison of various companies.
  5. Indices act as an underlying for Index Funds, Index Futures, and Options.
  6. They are used in passive fund management by Index funds.
  7. The index can give a comparison of returns on investments in stock markets as opposed to asset classes such as gold or debt.

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That’s all. I hope this post ‘What is Nifty and Sensex?” is helpful to the readers. Please comment below if you have any doubts. Have a great day and Happy Investing!

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