Indian shares end higher on strong corporate earnings
Photo Credit: Reuters

Indian shares ended higher on Thursday, with IT and financial stocks leading the gains, as a slew of strong corporate earnings boosted investor sentiment.

The blue-chip NSE Nifty 50 index ended 1.23% higher at 15,824.05, while the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex ended up 1.22% at 52,837.21.

The Nifty Bank Index, a major drag on the index earlier this week, ended 0.76% higher, with IDFC jumping as much as 19.1% to hit its highest since Jan. 16, 2018 after the Reserve Bank of India allowed the non-banking financial company to exit as a founder of IDFC First Bank after a lock-in period of five years is over.

IT major Wipro gained 2.8% after it announced its commitment to invest $1 billion in cloud capabilities over the next three years. IT stocks gained 1.8%.

Shares of Jubilant Food, the Indian franchise partner of Domino's Pizza, gained 12% after growth in its delivery services contributed to quarterly profit of 695.2 million rupees ($9.33 million), compared to a 739 mln rupee loss a year ago.

Bajaj Auto's quarterly profit doubled to 10.61 billion rupees ($142.70 mln), as the two- and three-wheeler maker reported selling more than 1 million vehicles.

Consumer goods giant Hindustan Unilever posted a rise in quarterly profit, but came in just under analysts' expectations, dragging shares down 2.3%.

Nifty metals ended up 2.9%, while lender Bajaj Finance and insurance company ICICI Prudential lifted the Nifty Financial Services Index 1.26% higher.

"Indian markets have made a smart pull-back, supported by the positive global set-up and a decent start to the earnings season," Milind Muchhala, executive director, Julius Baer, said in a note.

Stocks returned to near record highs in Europe as investors bet on the European Central Bank keeping its stimulus taps full open and Asia's stock markets headed for their best day in two months.

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