* BSE index gains 0.24 pct; NSE ends 0.18 pct higher
* Top analysts see Tata Motors beating Oct-Dec forecasts
* India's Jan inflation likely at more than 3-year low
By Abhishek Vishnoi
MUMBAI, Feb 13 Indian shares rose for a second
consecutive session on Wednesday with Tata Consultancy hitting a
record high after an industry body forecast software exports
would grow in the next fiscal year, while Tata Motors gained
after key unit JLR reported a surge in monthly sales.
The gains mark a recovery from an eight-session losing
streak that had sent the benchmark BSE index to its
lowest level since Dec. 31, 2012.
Still, caution remains, with attention shifting to January
wholesale price data on Thursday, after the central bank sparked
concerns about future interest rate cuts with a cautious
statement on monetary policy last month.
Although the wholesale inflation index is expected to ease
to a three-year low of 7 percent, that would still remain well
above the Reserve Bank of India's perceived comfort zone of
around 5 percent.
Markets could also be range-bound ahead of the 2013/14
budget, to be unveiled on Feb. 28, which will be critical in
determining the government's fiscal discipline.
"I think inflation data will be important, but the relevance
of it may be overshadowed by expectations ahead of the budget,"
said Jagannadham Thunuguntla, Head of Research, SMC Investments
and Advisors Limited.
The RBI will not just take WPI inflation, but will also
consider other factors in its March meeting, added Thunuguntla.
The benchmark BSE index rose 0.24 percent, or 47.04
points, to end at 19,608.08, marking its highest close in a
The broader NSE index rose 0.18 percent, or 10.45
points, to end at 5,932.95, closing above the psychologically
important 5,900 level for a second day.
Tata Consultancy Services Ltd rose 1.8 percent,
after earlier hitting a record high of 1,441.65 rupees, on hopes
earnings will improve in the fiscal year starting in April on
the back of an improving global economy.
The gains come a day after industry body, National
Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom),
forecast exports from the software services sector will grow
12-14 percent in 2013/14 to as much as $87 billion.
Other software services exporters also gained. Infosys Ltd
shares rose 1.2 percent, while HCL Technologies Ltd
ended up 4.6 percent.
Shares in Tata Motors gained 2.1 percent after
luxury unit Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) posted a surge in
both wholesale and retail sales last month.
Oil and Natural Gas Corp gained 1.1 percent,
clocking a second day of gains after quarterly earnings beat
estimates on Monday.
Shares in Motherson Sumi Systems Ltd surged 6.7
percent, a day after posting a recovery in quarterly earnings
and ahead of a planned stake sale that traders say could happen
at a premium.
Among decliners, State Bank of India fell 1.8
percent on speculation the country's biggest public sector bank
could report higher-than-expected bad loans when it unveils
October-December earnings on Thursday.
Shares in Tata Steel Ltd ended 2.3 percent lower
ahead of its December quarter earnings on worries the steel
maker would post a net loss.
The company after market hours reported a net loss of 7.63
Kingfisher Airlines ended 5 percent lower, its
maximum daily limit, after lenders said they would initiate
recovery proceedings against the carrier.
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FACTORS TO WATCH
* Yen holds gains, investors cautious of G7 statements
* Brent holds steady under $119 on higher demand outlook
* Dollar, euro ease against yen on G7 policy doubts
* Foreign institutional investor flows
* For closing rates of Indian ADRs
ASIA-PACIFIC STOCK MARKETS:
Pan-Asia........ Japan....... S.Korea...
S.E. Asia....... Hong Kong... Taiwan....
Australia/NZ.... India....... China.....
Wall Street .... Gold ....... Currency..
Eurostocks..... Oil ........ JP bonds...
ADR Report ..... LME metals. US bonds..
Stocks News US.. Stocks News Europe
DIARIES & DATA:
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(Additional reporting by Manoj Dharra; Editing by Sunil Nair)