May 28, 2018 / 7:33 AM / 6 months ago

Indian shares gain as crude oil slips; Sun Pharma top gainer

* NSE index up 0.68 pct, BSE index 0.5 pct up

* Banks, Oil firms lead; IT stocks fall

By Krishna V Kurup

May 28 (Reuters) - Indian equities gained for a third straight session on Monday as a sharp drop in crude prices and a recovery in the rupee boosted sentiment, while shares of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries saw their best day in over three years on strong fourth-quarter results.

The broader NSE index rose 0.84 percent to 10,693.80 as of 0726 GMT while the benchmark BSE index rose 0.76 percent to 35,189.29.

Oil prices fell on Monday, extending even steeper declines from Friday, as Saudi Arabia and Russia said they may increase supplies and as U.S. production gains showed no signs of abating.

“I think it’s a shift in sentiment,” said Krish Subramanyam, co-head and equity adviser at Altamount Capital, adding that high crude prices and a weaker rupee had been hurting equities.

The rupee firmed up against the dollar on Monday to its strongest level in two weeks. Shares of information technology companies fell, on worries that a stronger rupee could hit returns from the U.S. market, the biggest source of revenue for Indian IT companies.

Tata Consultancy Services Ltd fell 2.5 percent while Tech Mahindra Ltd shares posted their biggest intraday drop since May 29, 2017.

India’s largest drugmaker Sun Pharmaceutical’s fourth- quarter profit beat estimates, helped by an uptick in India and emerging markets.

The Nifty Pharma index rose 2.6 percent with Sun Pharma, up 7.6 percent, leading the gains.

Banking stocks also advanced, with Nifty PSU Bank rising 2.3 percent. The private banks index was up 1.1 percent, with HDFC Bank Ltd rising 1.3 percent.

Bank of Baroda Ltd which reported results on Friday touched its highest level in nearly three weeks despite a quarterly loss. Brokerages expect improvement in the state-run bank from fiscal 2019.

Shares of NBCC (India) Ltd posted their biggest intraday loss in over two months after the engineering and construction services provider posted weak March-quarter results on Friday. (Reporting by Krishna V Kurup in Bengaluru; Editing by Vyas Mohan)

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