Indian shares hit record highs as investors focus on earnings and interest rate decision

Indian shares hit record highs as investors focus on earnings and interest rate decision
# 04 August 2021 14:52 (UTC +04:00)

Indian shares hit a record high on Wednesday as investors remained upbeat in the middle of corporate earnings season and ahead of the central bank’s policy meeting, APA reports citing CNBC.

The Nifty 50 index rose 0.79% to 16,258.05, led by gains in financial services index which was up 2.44%. Earlier the benchmark reached a session high of 16,290.20.

On Tuesday, the Nifty 50, which represents the weighted average of 50 of the largest Indian companies on the National Stock Exchange, closed above the 16,000 level for the first time.

Meanwhile, the S&P Sensex was up 0.79% at 54,247.64 on Wednesday, retreating from a session high of 54,440.80.

Shares of Indian banks climbed: HDFC rose 2.6%, Axis Bank was up 1.8% and ICICI added 3.2%.

State Bank of India shares, however, declined 0.4%. India’s largest public lender is due to report earnings for the three months ending June on Wednesday.
Indian markets have held up comparatively well despite the economy’s struggles since last year to get growth back on track — progress was delayed by a devastating Covid-19 second wave this year.

Investors are also looking ahead to the decision by the Reserve Bank of India, which begins its three-day monetary policy meeting on Wednesday. The central bank is expected to leave interest rates unchanged.

“The RBI MPC is unlikely to rock the (policy) boat in August, opting to keep the repo rate at 4% and the policy corridor unchanged,” said Radhika Rao from Singapore’s DBS Group in a note last week.

“Forward guidance will favour a continuation of the accommodative policy stance to guard against growth risks, especially the third Covid wave,” she said. “The accompanying commentary will heed inflation risks through close monitoring and refrain from tweaking the policy levers for now.”

India’s retail inflation numbers for May and June came in above the RBI’s inflation target range of 2% to 6%.