Indian shares rise as IT, auto offset slide in financials, metals

By Bharath Rajeswaran and Manvi Pant

BENGALURU (Reuters) -Indian shares edged up on Wednesday, as a rise in information technology (IT), auto and pharmaceutical stocks offset slide in financial services and metals amid risk aversion due to a rise in domestic inflation and concerns over China’s economy.

The blue-chip Nifty 50 settled 0.16% higher at 19,465, while the S&P BSE Sensex rose 0.21% to 65,539.42, reversing losses in the final minutes of trading.

IT stocks rose 0.59%, led by Infosys on a $1.64 billion deal with Liberty Global to scale digital platforms.

Pharma stocks added 0.61% after Lupin received the U.S. FDA’s approval for a drug to treat blood pressure and heart failure.

The auto index gained 0.64% after the Indian government approved a $7 billion scheme to deploy 10,000 electric buses in 169 cities.

The gains in these sectors offset declines in financial services , banks and private banks, which were down between 0.3% and 0.5%.

Since hitting a record high on July 20, the Nifty has lost 2.57%. Over the same period, the financials index has shed 4.85%.

“Foreign investors are major index buyers and sellers. So when flows moderate, it means that money is being taken off financials which account for over 37% weightage in Nifty 50,” said Raghvendra Nath, managing director at Ladderup Wealth Management.

Foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) bought shares worth 7.37 billion rupees ($88.6 million) in the first half of August, the lowest inflows since the end of February.

Meanwhile, metals fell 0.94% on weak macro data from China, the world’s largest producer and consumer of the commodities.

“Rising global uncertainties are resulting in risk aversion and outflows from emerging markets,” said Gaurav Dua, senior vice president, head of capital market strategy at Sharekhan.

India’s retail inflation rose to a 15-month high in July. Analysts said that surge in inflation could hurt corporate earnings in the near-term and trigger further consolidation.

($1 = 83.2105 Indian rupees)

(Reporting by Bharath Rajeswaran and Manvi Pant in Bengaluru; Editing by Sonia Cheema, Nivedita Bhattacharjee and Varun H K)