* NSE index down 0.07 pct; BSE index 0.11 pct lower
* Nifty IT touches highest in nearly six months
* Bharti Airtel down over 2 pct
By Samantha Kareen Nair
Feb 21 Indian shares hovered around five-month
highs on Tuesday with telecoms declining ahead of an
announcement by Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd while IT stocks
extended gains following a share buyback plan by Tata
Consultancy Services Ltd.
Sentiment was broadly cautious with Asian shares largely
flat after a holiday in U.S. markets on Monday.
"Overall, the market has moved very marginally in the last
few sessions and what it looks like now is a time-based
correction with more stock-based moves," said Saurabh Jain,
assistant vice-president of research at SMC Global Securities.
"Focus will now rest on global cues such as U.S. interest
rates, dollar movement and foreign investment participation."
The broader NSE index was down 0.07 percent at
8,872.2 as of 0639 GMT after touching its highest since Sept. 9,
2016. The benchmark BSE index was 0.11 percent lower at
Jio has not shared details of the announcement, but traders
say the company will likely give an update on the number of
subscribers it has added and also an update about its current
plan to offer free data until the end of March.
Jio's free data offer has hit rivals, raising concerns about
competition and margins in the sector. On Tuesday, Bharti Airtel
was down 2.4 percent while Idea Cellular was 0.2
Meanwhile, Ambuja Cements Ltd fell as much as 2.8
percent in its biggest intraday percentage drop since Dec. 12,
2016 on weak December-quarter sales.
However, the Nifty IT index rose as much as 1.2
percent to its highest since Aug. 25, 2016 after TCS said on
Monday it would buy back shares worth up to 160 billion rupees
($2.39 billion) at a substantial premium, raising expectations
rivals such as Infosys would follow suit.
Tech Mahindra climbed 1.9 percent and HCL
Technologies gained 1.4 percent, while TCS was down
Metal stocks also rose with Jindal Steel and Power Ltd
gaining as much as 10 percent to its highest since
June 3, 2015.
India on Monday extended anti-dumping duty on some steel
products from China by five years, in a bid to retain
protectionist barriers and stem the tide of cheap foreign
($1 = 66.8950 Indian rupees)
(Reporting by Samantha Kareen Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by