India's Sensex Erases Gain; IT Shares Drop as Power Stocks Rally

  • Benchmark index gives up 0.5 percent increase from earlier
  • Power gauge best performer, IT worst among 13 industry indexes

Indian stocks were little changed as software exporters declined, offsetting a rally in power generators and equipment makers. The benchmark Sensex gave up a 0.5 percent advance from earlier in the day.

The key index rose less than 0.1 percent to 31,103.49 at the 3:30 p.m. close in Mumbai, while the NSE Nifty 50 Index retreated 0.1 percent, in a second day of declines. Power Grid Corp. of India Ltd. rose 2 percent after minister Piyush Goyal said Monday that the government is nearing a solution for “stressed power plants.”

“The devil is in the details and we have to see how the government proposes to help these power projects,” Chennai-based Bharanidhar Vijayakumar, manager for research at Spark Capital Advisors (India) Pvt., said by telephone. In the absence of any specific announcements, the stocks may retreat after this “brief spurt,” he said.

Seven of the 13 sector gauges compiled by BSE Ltd. advanced, led by the S&P BSE Power Index’s 0.8 percent increase. S&P BSE Information Technology Index dropped 1 percent, the steepest decline in the group.

“The biggest focus for investors now is the national sales tax scheduled for a July 1 rollout: how it pans out and its effects on the companies and the economy,” Jigar Shah, chief executive officer and head of research at Maybank Kim Eng Securities India Pvt. in Mumbai, said by phone. Stocks will trade “in a range” until then, he said.

Read more about India’s tax overhaul

Rally in India’s key equity gauges in 2017 is among the best of major Asian markets. Overseas and local investors have purchased more than $12 billion of Indian shares this year, according to the latest data compiled by Bloomberg.

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