Nifty, Sensex rise to four-month high as focus shifts to corporate earnings
Photo Credit: Reuters

Indian shares closed higher on Thursday, as metal and financial stocks gained, with investors looking forward to another earnings season, even as coronavirus cases continued to soar both at home and abroad.

The NSE Nifty 50 index closed up 1.01% at 10,813.45, while the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex rose 1.12% to 36,737.69. Both settled at four-month peaks.

A rise in Chinese iron ore futures and steel prices on the Shanghai Futures Exchange boosted metal stocks in India, with the Nifty metal index ending the session nearly 2% higher.

Hindalco Industries Ltd, Jindal Steel and Power Ltd and Steel Authority of India Ltd rose between 6.58% and 4.1%.

Gains in broader Asian stocks also supported domestic investor sentiment with MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan climbing 0.8% to touch a 20-week high.

India's Tata Consultancy Services rose as much as 1.15% in morning trade, but gave up gains to close 0.29% lower. The IT services firm is set to report quarterly results later in the day.

"Liquidity is pushing the markets higher, but with earnings coming in investors will take a fresh look at their portfolio," said Anand James, chief market strategist at Geojit Financial Services.

A surge in global liquidity as a result of central banks' response to the coronavirus crisis has propelled buying in Asian shares and helped Indian equity markets rally sharply since a crash in March.

Meanwhile, India reported nearly 25,000 new infections as of Thursday morning, taking the total to 767,296 and deaths to 21,129, health ministry data showed.

In Mumbai trading, shares of infrastructure engineering service provider Hindustan Construction Company Ltd jumped more than 4% after the company posted a profit for the March quarter.

Both the Nifty PSU Bank index and the Nifty Private Bank index finished Thursday's session over 1% higher.

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