Indian shares hit record highs, retail inflation data awaited

BENGALURU, Jan 13 (Reuters) - Indian shares hit fresh record highs on Monday, with Infosys Ltd leading gains after the IT bellwether beat quarterly profit estimates and cleared its top executives of financial misconduct allegations.

By 0451 GMT, India’s NSE Nifty 50 index were up 0.52% at 12,319.95 after scaling a fresh peak of 12,333.45. The S&P BSE Sensex gained 0.56% to 41,834.59, having hit a record high of 41,883.9 earlier in the session.

Infosys, whose quarterly net profit rose 23.5%, said on Friday its probe exonerated CEO Salil Parekh and CFO Nilanjan Roy of all allegations, including accusations that the duo prevented employees from presenting data on large deals.

Shares of the Bengaluru-based firm rose 4.17%, making it the biggest gainer on the Nifty. The rally also boosted the Nifty IT index, which jumped 1.23%.

“On the domestic front, market (is) likely to trade in a wider range between 12,000 and 12,350 zones while budget expectations, quarter(ly) earnings and global developments (are) likely to act as major triggers going ahead,” brokerage Motilal Oswal said in a note.

Investors now await retail inflation data for December due later in the day.

Among other stocks, Yes Bank Ltd fell 4% and was the biggest loser on the Nifty.

The private sector lender on Friday rejected a $1.2 billion investment from Canadian investor Erwin Singh Braich and Hong Kong-based SPGP Holdings and launched a $1.4 billion share sale.

Coal India Ltd was among the top gainers on the Nifty following a 2.14% increase, while Bharti Infratel Ltd fell 1.47%. On the global front, Asian shares rose to new 19-month highs ahead of the expected signing on a Phase 1 China-U.S. trade deal, although markets have yet to see the details of the agreement.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 0.47% higher, touching its highest point since June 2018. (Reporting by Philip George in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V)