Sensex, Nifty end higher; tech stocks gain

MUMBAI Fri Jul 18, 2014 5:10pm IST

A man walks past the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building in Mumbai December 5, 2013. REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui/Files

A man walks past the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building in Mumbai December 5, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Danish Siddiqui/Files

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MUMBAI (Reuters) - The BSE Sensex and Nifty edged higher on Friday, gaining for a fourth consecutive session, after Tata Consultancy Services' better-than-expected earnings sparked a rally in IT stocks and offset global concerns about the downing of a Malaysian airliner in Ukraine.

The Nifty rose 2.7 percent for the week, recovering some of its 3.8 percent fall last week when investors reacted with disappointment over the lack of major reforms in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's maiden budget on July 10.

Trading is expected to be dominated by corporate earnings in the near term, with investors also expected to pay close attention to global factors after a Malaysian plane was shot down in eastern Ukraine, stoking tensions between Russia and the West.

Foreign investors have been an integral part behind the Nifty's 21.6 percent gain so far this year. Overseas investors bought shares worth 19.12 billion rupees ($317.7 million) on Thursday, bringing their total investment in Indian shares so far to $11.45 billion, exchange and regulatory data showed.

"We are into the earnings season and there could be stock-specific moves. Markets would be largely news driven. There are geo-political concerns, but we still believe its a buy-on-dips market for quality stocks," said Jagannadham Thunuguntla, head of research and chief strategist at SMC Global Securities.

The BSE Sensex ended 0.31 percent higher at 25,641.56. The index gained 2.5 percent this week.

The broader Nifty also gained 0.31 percent to 7,663.90.

Technology shares were leading the gains, with IT index of the NSE ending 1.3 percent higher after TCS' consolidated net profit for the three months to June 30, rose to a stronger-than-expected 50.58 billion rupees ($840.5 million) from 39.87 billion rupees a year earlier.

Shares in TCS gained 2.5 percent, Wipro Ltd (WIPR.NS) ended 1.8 percent and Infosys Ltd (INFY.NS) added 0.4 percent.

Among other gainers, lenders further extended their winning streak after the RBI on Tuesday exempted long-term bonds raised for the infrastructure and affordable housing sector from reserve requirements.

The Bank Nifty gained 6.5 percent this week, the best weekly gain in eight, after falling 7.1 percent in the previous week.

IDFC Ltd (IDFC.NS) rose 2.9 percent, ending up 10.3 percent for the week, ICICI Bank Ltd (ICBK.NS) gained 2.1 percent, while Axis Bank Ltd (AXBK.NS) ended 2.1 percent higher.

Shares of non-banking financial companies, which take gold as collateral, surge after the central bank issued draft guidelines for those seeking a license to set up a payments banks or a small bank.

Muthoot Finance Ltd (MUTT.NS) surged 3.6 percent, while Manappuram Finance Ltd (MNFL.NS) ended up 3.1 percent.

Bucking the trend, power equipment makers and energy stocks fell. Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL.NS) ended 1.9 percent lower, while Tata Power Co Ltd (TTPW.NS) ended down 2.5 percent and NTPC Ltd (NTPC.NS) closed 0.5 percent lower.

(Editing by Anand Basu)

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