Indian stocks on track for fourth week of gains; inflation data monitored

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A security guard walks past the National Stock Exchange (NSE) logo inside its building in Mumbai, India, May 28, 2019. REUTERS/Francis Mascarenhas

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BENGALURU, Aug 12 (Reuters) – Indian stocks stabilized on Friday and were on course to end higher for a fourth straight week on the back of strength in metal stocks, as investors awaited domestic inflation data for July, expected later.

The NSE Nifty 50 Index (.NSEI) rose 0.01% to 17,660.45, 0425 GMT, and the S&P BSE Sensex Index (.BSESN) fell 0.02% to 59,319 ,41.

Tech stocks weighed on the market, even as benchmarks were on course for the longest winning streak since January.

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Over the past four weeks and including Friday’s session, BSE Sensex and ESN have climbed more than 5% and are up nearly 1.8% year-to-date, data shows. .

The markets were closed on Tuesday for a local public holiday.

Market participants have been watching the Consumer Price Index (CPI) data expected after the market close.

A Reuters poll showed that retail price inflation in India likely eased in July due to lower food and fuel prices, but remained well above the upper tolerance limit of 6% from the Reserve Bank of India for a seventh consecutive month. Read more

In Mumbai trading, the Nifty Metals Index <.niftymet> and the energy index (.NIFTYENR) climbed 1.84% and 1.16%, respectively, while the IT index (.NIFTYIT) fell 0.75%.

Among the Nifty 50’s top performers, state oil producer Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC.NS) climbed nearly 4% ahead of its quarterly results and Tata Steel (TISC.NS) rose 2.4%.

Apollo Hospitals Enterprise (APLH.NS) fell 2.4%. The company announced a 35% drop in quarterly profits on Thursday evening. (https://bit.ly/3QAv86Y)

“The Nifty would see some sort of profit booking attempt ahead of a long weekend and as it has gained nearly 1500 points in the last eight trading sessions,” said Prashanth Tapse, research analyst at Mehta Equities.

Indian markets will be closed on Monday.

Broader Asian stocks tracked weakness on Wall Street overnight as investors jittered over uncertainty surrounding the pace of interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve to fight inflation despite some sweetness last month.

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Reporting by Rama Venkat in Bengaluru; Editing by Dhanya Ann Thoppil and Neha Arora

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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