September 20, 2019 / 4:40 AM / in a month

Indian shares gain ahead of tax council meet

Sept 20 (Reuters) - Indian shares traded higher on expectations that the government will dole out stimulus measures on Friday to support the economy, amid demands over reduced tax burden on products.

The broader NSE index was up 0.21% at 10,727.6, as of 0412 GMT on Friday, while the benchmark BSE index was trading 0.3% higher at 36,205.52.

The country’s Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council is set to meet in Goa to recommend tax cuts on 20-25 products, sources told Reuters.

The GST council meeting comes amid demands raised by various industries and consumers for government help to boost a sagging economy.

Separately, Reserve Bank of India chief Shaktikanta Das said there is room for further interest rate cuts to bolster economic growth since inflation continues to remain within the central bank's target, other media reported here

The Indian rupee strengthened by 0.26% to 71.11 against the dollar, while the benchmark 10-year bond yield was trading at 6.57%, versus the previous close of 6.64%.

Shares in other Asian markets also edged higher as economic stimulus boost around the world, including monetary easing by the U.S. Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank, eased fears over a global slowdown.

The local indexes, however, were set for their worst week since early May, after a surge in crude prices triggered heavy selling in stock markets earlier this week.

Shares of private-sector lender Yes Bank Ltd, which suffered a sharp drop in the previous session, rose as much as 6.8%.

HDFC Bank Ltd, which is among the top boosts in the index, gained as much as 1.7%.

Media firm Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd slumped 11% to its lowest in five years, and was the top loser in the NSE index. The stock is set for a fifth straight session of losses. (Reporting by Chris Thomas in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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