August 23, 2017 / 6:41 AM / 6 months ago

Indian shares range-bound; banks, realty gain

* NSE index up 0.45 pct, BSE index 0.53 pct higher

* Fortis Healthcare rises 7.3 pct after block deal

* Infosys on track for gain after three sessions

By Arnab Paul

Aug 23 (Reuters) - Indian shares traded higher on Wednesday, on track for a second straight gain, but were confined to a narrow range for want of fresh triggers after a tepid results season.

“Average first-quarter corporate results and a lack of fresh triggers will see markets remain range-bound in the near to medium term,” said RK Gupta, managing director at Taurus Asset Management.

The broader NSE index was up 0.45 percent at 9,809.75 as of 0637 GMT, while the benchmark BSE index was 0.53 percent higher at 31,457.52.

Banks were among the top gainers with private-sector lender ICICI Bank rising 1.3 percent. Among state-run peers Allahabad Bank Ltd and Bank of India rose over 2.5 percent each.

Realty stocks also gained with DLF Ltd climbing nearly 8 percent after it said an audit committee would review the status of the proposed sale of compulsorily convertible preference shares to an affiliate of Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC.

Shares of Fortis Healthcare Ltd rose as much as 7.3 percent following a block deal worth 605.9 million rupees on Tuesday, while Goldman Sachs initiated coverage with a “buy” rating.

IT stocks were among the day’s decliners with Tech Mahindra Ltd falling over 1.5 percent, though Infosys Ltd was on track for its first gain in four sessions.

However, institutional interest has been steadily rising with domestic buyers picking up shares worth a net 4.35 billion rupees on Tuesday, data on the NSE showed. (Reporting by Arnab Paul in Bengaluru; Editing by Sunil Nair)

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