India’s Sensex Climbs for Second Day; Tata Motors, ICICI Gain

Indian stocks climbed for a second day before reports forecast to show inflation rate eased to the slowest in more than three years, and before the quarterly earnings reporting season begins tomorrow.

The S&P BSE Sensex gained 0.5 percent to 18,497.22 at 9:43 a.m. in Mumbai. Tata Motors Ltd. (TTMT) surged the most in five months after Jaguar Land Rover March sales jumped 16 percent. ICICI Bank Ltd. (ICICIBC), the second-biggest lender, gained 2.3 percent.

Consumer price gains slowed in March from a month earlier, while wholesale prices rose the least in 40 months, according to separate Bloomberg surveys before data due this week and next. Infosys Ltd. (INFO), India’s second-largest software maker, will announce earnings tomorrow, marking the start of the reporting season for the March quarter. Net income at about 43 percent of the 30 Sensex firms trailed forecasts in the three months ended Dec. 31, compared with 40 percent in the previous two quarters.

Consumer prices may have risen 10.7 percent from a year earlier in March from almost 11 percent in February, a report tomorrow may show, while data on March 15 may show wholesale prices rose 6.3 percent, according to Bloomberg surveys.

Inflation above the Reserve Bank of India’s 5 percent “comfort level” has limited Governor Duvvuri Subbarao’s ability to slash borrowing costs to revive an economy growing at the slowest pace in a decade.

Foreign funds sold a net $114 million worth of Indian (SENSEX) shares on April 9, a sixth day of net outflows, the longest stretch since May, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Still, foreigners’ net equity investment in the nation’s stocks this year is $10.1 billion, a record for the period, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Inflows last year totaled $24.5 billion, the most among 10 Asian markets tracked by Bloomberg.

To contact the reporter on this story: Rajhkumar K Shaaw in Mumbai at rshaaw@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Darren Boey at dboey@bloomberg.net

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