BENGALURU, Jan 17 (Reuters) - Indian shares closed at their
highest level in nearly three months on Monday as automakers
advanced and UltraTech Cement jumped on strong earnings, but
losses in HCL Technologies due to weak margins put a lid on the
The NSE Nifty 50 index ended 0.29% higher at
18,308.1 and the S&P BSE Sensex rose 0.14% to 61,308.91
as the third-quarter earnings season entered its second week.
Both the indexes are now just around 1.5% shy of record
highs hit in October, after rising for fourth straight weeks.
Investors are looking ahead to major events including
blue-chip corporate earnings and the federal budget due early
Underpinning the gains on Monday, UltraTech Cement
rose 2.7% to a two-month high after reporting a jump in
quarterly profit and saying demand would rebound in the final
The Nifty Auto index was the best performing
sub-index with a 2.1% gain, led by a 5.1% rise in Hero Motocorp
. The two-wheeler maker said it would invest about
$56.6 million in electric vehicle (EV) firm Ather Energy.
Carmaker Maruti Suzuki India rose 2.2% after it
raised prices and Tata Motors was up 3% after a report
said the company was planning to make 50,000 EVs in the next
HCL Technologies slumped 5.9% and was the top
loser on the Nifty 50 on disappointment over the IT firm's
margin outlook after wage hikes dented profit.
Heavyweight lender HDFC Bank also weighed on the
index as it fell 1.5% on flat margins and lower fees from its
Meanwhile, a steady rise in India's daily COVID-19 cases
eased, with the country logging 258,089 cases on Monday compared
with Sunday's 271,202 cases.
(Reporting by Chris Thomas in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya