July 19, 2013 / 5:48 AM / 4 years ago

Sensex ends flat after touching near two-month high

Brokers engage in trading on their computer terminals at a stock brokerage firm in Mumbai March 25, 2008.Punit Paranjpe/Files

MUMBAI (Reuters) - The BSE Sensex ended flat on Friday after rising earlier to its highest intraday level in nearly two months as HDFC fell on lower-than-expected June quarter earnings while blue chips such as Sun Pharma declined on profit-booking.

The benchmark stock indexes rose for a fourth consecutive week, but traders are worried as foreign investors have remained net sellers for the last four sessions, totalling 6.04 billion rupees, despite government's and central bank recent measures to shore up the rupee.

Quarterly earnings from blue chips such as Reliance Industries (RELI.NS) later in the day, Larsen & Toubro Ltd (LART.NS) on Monday and ITC Ltd (ITC.NS) on Thursday are also awaited for gauging the near-term direction.

"Going into next week, we have several important results followed by monetary policy meeting in end-July," said Sanjeev Zarbade, vice president, private client group research, Kotak Securities.

The benchmark Sensex closed up 0.11 percent, or 21.44 points, at 20,149.85, after earlier rising to its highest intraday level since May 21. It gained 0.95 percent for the week.

The broader Nifty fell 0.15 percent, or 8.85 points, to end at 6,029.20. It ended 0.33 percent higher for the week, marking its fourth weekly gain.

Housing Development Finance Corporation Ltd (HDFC.NS), India's biggest mortgage lender, fell 3.1 percent after it reported a 17 percent rise in net profit for the April-June quarter missing consensus estimates.

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd (SUN.NS) ended 3.4 percent lower after hitting its all-time high on Thursday.

The Reserve Bank of India's move on Monday to raise short-term rates continued to weigh on banking stocks with the NSE's industry benchmark falling 6.4 percent for the week.

ICICI Bank Ltd (ICBK.NS) ended 2.6 percent lower, while Yes Bank Ltd (YESB.NS) closed down 3.6 percent.

Mastek Ltd (MAST.NS) fell 10.1 percent after its April-June net profit fell 68.13 percent to 70.9 million rupees.

Raymond Ltd (RYMD.NS) fell 3.5 percent, while Indian Hotels Company Ltd (IHTL.NS) ended 3.4 percent lower after the announcement of their exclusion from the National Stock Exchange's (NSE) derivatives segment.

However, among stocks that gained, Tata Consultancy Services Ltd (TCS.NS), India's largest software services exporter, ended up 5 percent after earlier touching an all-time high of 1,759 rupees, a day after posting April-June earnings that beat estimates and maintaining an upbeat outlook.

Other IT companies also gained with Infosys Ltd (INFY.NS) rising 1.7 percent and Wipro Ltd (WIPR.NS) advancing 1.4 percent.

The BSE IT index .BSEIT gained 2.8 percent after earlier hitting its all-time high at 7,132.54.

Bajaj Auto (BAJA.NS), India's second-largest motorcycle maker, gained 3.6 percent as its June-quarter operating margins, after adjusting for mark-to-market loss, beat estimates at 20.4 percent, analysts said.

Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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