November 30, 2018 / 6:19 AM / in 5 months

Indian shares hit near 2-month high ahead of GDP data, G20 meet

* NSE and BSE indexes up 0.3 pct each

* NBFCs gain after RBI eases asset securitisation norms

* Tata Motors fall after JLR says it will cut jobs in UK plant

By Krishna V Kurup

Nov 30 (Reuters) - Indian shares inched up on Friday, with both the indexes marking their highest level in nearly two months, while the Indian rupee strengthened to a fresh 3-month high ahead of key economic growth data later in the day.

Broader Asian markets wavered as investors remained cautious ahead of a crucial meeting between the Chinese and U.S. presidents at the G20 meet during the weekend that could determine the course of a heated trade war over the next year.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan wobbled between positive and negative territory in early trade and was last up 0.4 percent.

Back home, investors were awaiting gross domestic product data which probably moderated to 7.4 percent in the July-September quarter, according to a Reuters poll, weakening just as Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government gets set for an election due by May.

The data is expected by 1200 GMT.

The Indian rupee gained up to 0.35 percent on the day to 69.595 per dollar, its best since Aug 21.

The broader NSE index was up 0.25 percent at 10,885.45 as of 0608 GMT, while the benchmark BSE index rose 0.27 percent to 36,268.19.

The broader NSE index breached its 10,900 level for the first time since Oct. 3, while the BSE index also clocked its best level in almost two months.

“Decline in international crude oil prices and strengthening of rupee are the positives today,” said R.K. Gupta, managing director at Taurus Asset Management, adding that we may see some profit booking in the second-half after Thursday’s rally in some specific stocks.

“Investors are also eyeing outcome of the G20 meet over the weekend,” he said.

Shares of Indian non-banking financial companies gained after the central bank relaxed rules to sell or securitise their loan books, in a bid to ease persistent stress in the sector.

Dewan Housing Finance Corp Ltd’s stock rose as much as 7.4 percent, while those of Bajaj Finance Ltd gained up to 2.3 percent, their highest since Sept. 19.

IT firms were among the top performers on the NSE index, with Infosys Ltd up as much as 1.7 percent.

Meanwhile, shares in Tata Motors Ltd dropped as much as 3.9 percent after its British unit Jaguar Land Rover said on Thursday it is going to cut 500 jobs temporarily at its plant in central England. (Reporting by Krishna V Kurup in Bengaluru; editing by Rashmi Aich)

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