Indian shares closed higher on Friday as index heavyweight Reliance Industries (RIL) surged 3.67 per cent after the company announced a 1:1 bonus share issue. Sensex ended 124.49 points higher at 32,028.89 while the NSE benchmark, Nifty settled 41.95 points or 0.42 per cent higher at 9,915.25 near its all-time closing high of 9,915.95. Better-than-expected-earnings from RIL and Wipro, bonus share announcement and a low-cost, 4G-enabled phone launch by RIL boosted investor sentiment. Reliance Industries shares jumped to a more than 9-1/2-year high of Rs. 1,591.70 during intraday trade.
Reliance Chairman Mukesh Ambani announced on Friday the launch of Jio Phone – aimed to draw tens of millions of low-income users to its telecoms venture Jio’s service – a day after the oil-to-telecoms conglomerate posted “surprisingly robust” results, fuelled by improved refining margins.
Shares of incumbent telecom players slumped on worries about the intensifying competition in the sector. Bharti Airtel fell 2.04 per cent while Idea Cellular closed3.11 per cent lower. During intraday trade, Bharti Airtel Ltd and Idea Cellular Ltd were down as much as 4.1 per cent and 7.3 per cent, respectively. Bharti Airtel was the top loser among 51 stocks in Nifty.
“Sentiment is now turning positive towards large-cap companies, with corporate results being fairly decent so far, and that is one of the key drivers for the market,” said Siddharth Purohit, senior research analyst at Angel Broking.
Wipro jumped up as much as 8.1 percent to their highest since April 2016 before closing 6.28 per cent higher at Rs. 286.05. Wipro was the top gainer in Nifty. Wipro’s earnings also boosted expectation for other IT stocks like HCL Tech, which will report its earnings next week. HCL Tech added 2.18 per cent and was among the top five gainers in the Nifty. The IT sub-index of NSE, Nifty IT closed 2.1 per cent higher.