Mumbai: Indian shares were trading up on Friday, with engineering and construction conglomerate Larsen & Toubro climbing 1% ahead of its quarterly earnings.
Investors, however, were edgy ahead of a European leaders meeting on the weekend to tackle the euro zone debt that has cash a shadow on foreign fund investments.
By 12:02pm, the main 30-share index was up 0.3% at 16,988.27 points, with 18 of its components advancing.
Larsen, which has fallen 29.5% so far this year, was up 1% at 1,399 rupees before its quarterly result that is expected to show almost flat profit.
Shares in Maruti Suzuki , India’s largest carmaker, rose as much as 1.9% after local media reported that a fortnight-long strike at its Manesar plant in north India had ended.
“Most companies so far have met market expectations and therefore we are on track to achieve 15% earnings growth in FY12,” Deven Choksey, managing director at KR Choksey Securities, said.
He forecast the 50-share NSE index to move in a range of 4,900 to 5,200 in the near term, with the Sunday meeting of European leaders watched for direction of foreign fund flows.
The broader index was up 0.3% at 5,105.95 points.
“A lot depends on the outcome of the European Union plans to capitalise its weak banks. One can look at buying public sector banks at current valuations,” Choksey said.
State Bank of India , the country’s largest lender, was up 1.2%, while rival ICICI Bank gained 0.2%.
Motorcycle makers Hero MotoCorp and Bajaj Auto rose 1% and 2.3%, respectively, on robust sales growth expected in the run to the festive season.
Cairn India fell 2% to 287.75 rupees after brokerage Macquarie downgraded the oil explorer to ‘underperform´ from ‘neutral´ and maintained target price at 260 rupees citing expensive valuations and on expectations of a possible decline in crude oil prices.
Shares in DLF Ltd fell 1.5% after the capital markets regulator said on Thursday it would investigate allegations the top-listed realtor failed to disclose a police complaint against an associate firm in its share sale document in 2007.
Markets elsewhere in Asia were cautious after European leaders said they did not expect Sunday’s meeting to give an all-cure solution to the euro zone’s debt problems, with regional leaders still sharply divided over how to strengthen a rescue fund.
The MSCI’s broadest index of Asia Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.3%, while Japan’s Nikkei was flat.
KPIT Cummins Infosystems rose 2.1% after its July-September net profit jumped 54%.
Indiabulls Real Estates climbed 1.3% after its second quarter net profit grew 22%.
Punj Lloyd , which had projects worth 35 billion rupees in Libya as of February, rose nearly 3% on hopes that the insurgency in that country might end following the killing of Moammar Gadhafi on Thursday. .