Indian stocks open higher; main income to provide direction

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BENGALURU: Indian stocks were poised to open higher on Monday, following a Wall Street rally in the previous session, with stocks also factoring in the gains of heavyweights like Reliance.

India’s NSE stock futures listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange were up 0.53 percent at 18,140.50 as of 7:32 am IST.

Domestic stocks will react to a host of key earnings starting Friday and into the weekend, including those from heavyweights Reliance Industries, ICICI Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd.

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Financial stocks could gain after robust quarterly results from top banks over the weekend.

Wall Street stocks closed higher Friday as positive quarterly earnings helped boost Netflix, while Google parent Alphabet climbed after it announced job cuts.

Most Asian stocks were closed on Monday for the Lunar New Year holidays.

Foreign institutional investors sold rupees 20.02 billion ($247.22 million) worth of shares on a net basis on Friday, while domestic investors bought rupees 15.10 billion worth of shares net, according to preliminary NSE data.

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STOCKS TO WATCH

** Reliance Industries Ltd reported a bigger-than-expected decline in quarterly profits on Friday as India’s largest company by market value took a hit from the government’s windfall tax on fuel exports.

** Kotak Mahindra Bank on Saturday reported a 31 percent increase in net profit for the October-December quarter, helped by strong revenues and healthy loan growth.

** ICICI Bank on Saturday reported a 34.2 percent increase in net profit for the October-December quarter, driven by improved revenues and healthy lending growth.

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** India’s largest cement producer, UltraTech Cement, reported a 38 percent drop in quarterly profit on Saturday, pressured by rising costs.

** Yes Bank reported a surprise 80 percent plunge in quarterly profit on Saturday as bad loan provisions increased.

** SBI Life Insurance Co on Saturday reported a 16 percent drop in third-quarter earnings, impacted by an increase in costs.

($1 = 80.9790 Indian Rupees)

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