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Sensex, Nifty end higher as banks, financials offset Reliance weakness

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Indian stocks ended higher on Monday, as gains in heavyweight bank and financial stocks on strong earnings boosted indexes and offset losses in Reliance Industries after the oil-to-telecoms conglomerate reported a quarterly profit dip.

FILE PHOTO: People walk past the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building in Mumbai, India, March 9, 2020. REUTERS/Francis Mascarenhas

The NSE Nifty 50 index closed up 0.23% at 11,669.15 and the S&P BSE Sensex ended 0.36% higher at 39,757.58.

The country’s biggest mortgage lender HDFC Ltd rose as much as 7.4%, the top boost on the main indexes, after the company reported an upbeat profit for the quarter to September.

They also helped the Nifty Financials Index rise as much as 4.6%.

The Nifty Banking Index snapped a three-session losing streak to end 4.15% higher, led by private-sector lenders IndusInd Bank and ICICI Bank adding 6.3% and 7.3%, respectively, after they reported upbeat results on Friday.

“Top banks and financial companies have seen some good results and we are seeing some stellar moves on those stocks,” said Neeraj Dewan, director at Quantum Securities in Mumbai.

“There were also a lot of short positions being built up on bank stocks.”

Reliance Industries saw its worst day since March and ended 8.69% lower after the company on Friday reported a 15% fall in quarterly profit as the COVID-19 pandemic battered its oil business.

Reliance, India’s most valuable stock, lost about 916 billion rupees ($12.31 billion) in market value from its last close, after having gained in three of four sessions ahead of its earnings results.

Reliance’s rival Bharat Petroleum Corp ended down 2.27%, while the Nifty energy index closed 2.5% lower.

Reporting by Derek Francis in Bengaluru; Editing by Ramakrishnan M.