Indian shares track Asian markets higher, metal stocks shine

BENGALURU, Jan 2 (Reuters) - Indian shares rose on Thursday, in line with Asian markets, as investors cheered Beijing’s monetary policy easing decision and upbeat cues on the Sino-U.S. trade deal front.

The NSE Nifty 50 index rose 0.3% to 12,219.25 by 0410 GMT on the second trading day of the year, while the S&P BSE Sensex climbed 0.32% to 41,433.09.

China’s central bank on Wednesday cut the amount of cash that all banks must hold as reserves, releasing around 800 billion yuan ($114.91 billion) in funds to shore up the slowing economy.

The news sent MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan 0.35% higher in morning trade.

Aiding sentiment further was U.S. President Donald Trump’s announcement on Tuesday that the signing of Phase 1 trade deal with China will take place on Jan. 15.

Among sub-indexes, the Nifty Metal index added over a percent, with shares of Steel Authority of India advancing over 3.5%.

The Nifty Auto index rose as much as 0.4%, led by a near 1% gain in shares of Tata Motors Ltd.

Index heavyweights like Reliance Industries Ltd and miner Vedanta Ltd rose in early trade, rising as much as 0.95% and 1.36%, respectively.

Meanwhile, shares of Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilizers & Chemicals tanked 4.38% to an over three-year low after the company on Wednesday said the country’s telecom regulatory body had issued a demand notice to pay 150.20 billion rupees ($2.11 billion).

$1 = 71.3200 Indian rupees Reporting by Chandini Monnappa in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V