Mumbai: Indian shares rose nearly 1% on Monday, bolstered by hopes for fresh stimulus measures after official estimates showed the economy expanding at its slowest pace in six years.
By 12:04pm, the 30-share BSE stock index was up 1% at 9,394.61 points, after rising as much as 1.4%. Twenty-two of its components were trading higher.
The 50-share NSE Index was up 0.7% at 2,863.10 points.
Tata Steel, the world’s sixth-largest steel maker, rose 5.1% to Rs195.65 after the company said January steel sales from its Indian operations had bounced back sharply, up 26% from a year earlier.
Last month, the company had reported a 56% slump in standalone December quarter net profit amid slowing demand.
India’s economy is expected to expand at 7.1% in fiscal 2008/09, slower than the previous year’s 9% as the global slowdown cuts back demand and hurts key sectors, an official estimate showed on Monday.
Traders said the data reinforced expectations the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) would cut rates, which could boost treasury income for banks as bond prices rise.
Largest lender State Bank of India was up 1% at Rs1,130, ICICI Bank added 2.6% at Rs417.45 and Housing Development Finance Corp rose 3.1% to Rs1,457.
Investors are also eyeing an interim budget on 16 February when the government is expected to unveil another stimulus plan to revive slowing growth.
Energy giant Reliance Industries rose 1.5% to Rs1,363 on strong foreign fund interest. The company is due to start gas supplies by March from its Krishna Godavari fields off India’s east coast.