Mumbai: Indian shares were little changed on Monday amid subdued world equities, while automakers climbed after Mahindra and Mahindra said it took another step to buy a majority stake in troubled South Korea’s Ssangyong.
Jindal Steel and Power rose 2.2% after it said over the weekend it had resumed developing the El Mutun steel and iron ore mine in Bolivia, after Bolivia sanctioned additional land for the project.
By 10:17am, the 30-share BSE index was trading up 0.03% at 18,406.60, with 19 of its components gaining.
Mehul Dedhia, assistant vice-president of sales at brokerage Sharekhan, said a lack of news to drive the market either way was keeping prices ranged.
“We may not see a steep fall now that monsoon rains are doing good, but there could be some resistance at Nifty level of 5,555,” he said.
The 50-share NSE index, or Nifty, was flat at 5,531.35.
Monsoon rains, which are vital for India’s economy, are likely to be normal this week in most parts of the country, boosting prospects for rice, cane, oilseeds and cotton crops, the weather office said on Friday.
Mahindra and Mahindra, was trading up 2.1% at Rs630.70 after the utility vehicle maker said it signed a memorandum of understanding to buy a majority stake in Ssangyong.
Other auto stocks such as Maruti Suzuki, Tata Motors and Hero Honda were up between 0.3% and 0.8% on hopes of better sales for August, dealers said.
The BSE index has gained 5.4% in the year to date, boosted by foreign fund inflows of $12.4 billion.
In the broader market, gainers were more than twice the number of losers while 115 million shares changed hands on the BSE.
Elsewhere, the MSCI’s measure of Asian markets other than Japan was barely changed while Japan’s Nikkei shed 0.6%.
Tata Steel was up 0.5% at Rs523 after the world’s seventh-largest steelmaker said late on Friday it would invest 10 billion rupees to set up a plant that would produce 50,000 tons of ferro chrome a year and a second plant that would produce 400,000 of rebar steel a year.
Crisil rose 3.4% to Rs5,618 after the ratings agency said on Friday its board would meet to consider share buyback on 25 August.