Indian stocks edged up in petty trades as IT and pharmaceuticals gained

A bird flies over the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building in Mumbai, India on January 31, 2020. REUTERS / Francis Mascarenhas

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BENGALURU, Dec.30 (Reuters) – Indian stocks edged higher on Thursday amid limited trading as the information technology and pharmaceutical sectors grew, while the country recorded the strongest increase in the number of daily cases of coronavirus in a month.

The NSE Nifty 50 Index (.NSEI) was up 0.2% to 17,245 at 5:25 am GMT and the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex (.BSESN) was up 0.18% to 57,911.10.

“The strong growth momentum in India’s IT sector and the status that pharma enjoys will ensure that money gravitates to these sectors until Omicron’s fears are clear,” said Ajay Bodke, independent market analyst .

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The Nifty IT Index (.NIFTYIT) gained 0.9% and the Pharmaceuticals Index (.NIPHARM) rose 0.55%.

The computer index gained for a fifth consecutive week and is up more than 59%, so far this year.

“We believe the IT industry is in a multi-year bull cycle due to a robust demand environment, strong transaction dynamics, a healthy transaction pipeline and accelerating digitization across all industries. “said Mohit Nigam, Head of Portfolio Management Services, Hem Securities.

Indian stocks are down more than 7% from a record high in October amid concerns over high valuations and the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 across the world. India reported a daily increase of 13,154 cases of COVID-19.

“Omicron’s hospitalization rate is very low. But, if the sheer numbers were to overwhelm the hospital infrastructure, then one could see the lockdowns unfolding and the crimping of economic activity,” said Bodke.

Among individual stocks, RBL Bank (RATB.NS) fell 8% after a report said a write-off of Rs 3 billion was the main reason for the Indian banking regulator’s intervention in the private lender.

RBL said over the weekend that its managing director and managing director was on sick leave and that the Reserve Bank of India had appointed an executive to the lender’s board of directors. Read more

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Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman in Bangalore; Editing by Vinay Dwivedi

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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