Mumbai: Indian shares turned negative late on Friday morning. At 11:28am, the 30-share BSE index was down 0.02% at 17,613.54 points, with 17 of its components declining.
The main index had gained as much as 0.6% earlier in the session. The 50-share NSE index was up 0.03% at 5,276.35.
Reliance Industries, which has the heaviest weight in the main index, erased some of its early gains and was up 0.7%. The energy conglomerate’s annual general meeting of shareholders began at 11:00am.
Mukesh Ambani, chairman of the firm said it is ready to provide gas to power plants controlled by his brother Anil Ambani’s Reliance ADAG.
At the annual general meeting, he said the company looks forward to a “harmonious and constructive” relationship with ADAG.
The Times of India said on Friday No. 2 mobile firm Reliance Communications, controlled by Anil, was in advanced talks to sell fibre optic cables and telecoms tower business to Reliance Industries.
The Economic Times reported that Reliance Industries may buy a 26% stake in shipbuilder Pipavav Shipyard, citing market sources.
By 10:04am, the 30-share BSE index was trading up 0.44% at 17,693.65 after hitting 17,721.99, its highest since 27 April. Eighteen of its components were trading in the green. The 50-share NSE index was up 0.4% to 5,294.25.
The benchmark has risen 3.7% so far this week, and is on course for an eighth day of gains.
“I do not rule out profit booking at current levels,” said Nagpal. “But a steep downside is not likely. There is still a lot of money waiting on the sidelines.”
A report from EPFR Global showed investors set aside sovereign debt fears and shifted their money to higher-returning assets in mid-June, with emerging market assets and US equities among the recipients of fresh cash.
Foreign funds have bought around $773 million of India equities so far this month, and helped lift the benchmark index up 4.4%.
Reliance Industries was up 1.2% at Rs1,084.40, while Reliance Communications gained 1.8%.
Software majors advanced on hopes a global recovery will boost outsourcing orders. Tata Consultancy Services rose 0.8% and Infosys climbed 0.4%.
Engineering major Larsen & Toubro climbed 1.7%, extending gains from the previous session after provisional data showed its June quarter tax payment rose 18% from a year earlier, indicating stronger profits.
In the broader market, gainers led losers in a ratio of 1.6:1 on volume of 68 million shares.
Shipbuilder Pipavav Shipyard rose 2.3% to Rs102.55 after the newspaper report that Reliance Industries may buy 26% stake in the company.
Non-ferrous metals producer Sterlite Industries fell 0.9% to Rs688.45, as Shanghai copper fell more than half a%, following a 3.1% tumble in London prices.
Cairn India, an unit of UK’s Cairn Energy, dropped 0.5% to Rs305 as crude oil prices eased.