Sensex, Nifty rise for fourth day on gains in auto stocks

Indian shares settled higher on Wednesday as automotive stocks gained on news the government could consider tax cuts on some vehicles, while optimism ahead of a key speech by the U.S. Federal Reserve chairman aided global investor sentiment.

India’s main stock indexes gained for the fourth consecutive day, boosted in recent sessions by better-than-feared corporate earnings and upbeat expectations around coronavirus treatments.

The NSE Nifty 50 index .NSEI ended 0.67% higher at 11,549.60 on Wednesday, while the S&P BSE Sensex .BSESN rose 0.59% to 39,073.92.

The top boosts to the Nifty 50 were conglomerate Reliance Industries Ltd (RELI.NS) and Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd (KTKM.NS), which gained about 2.6% each.

Hero Moto Corp (HROM.NS), Bajaj Auto (BAJA.NS), Eicher Motors (EICH.NS) and TVS Motor (TVSM.NS), all prominent manufacturers of two-wheeler vehicles, rose between 1.4% and 6.4%.

Indian Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said the goods and services tax (GST) rates on two-wheelers merited a revision and the matter would be taken up with the GST Council.

Automakers in India have argued for temporary tax cuts on vehicles, to try to boost sales and generate revenue after the coronavirus outbreak hit demand.

Tata Motors Ltd (TAMO.NS) finished 8.5% higher – its best day since early June – after the company pledged to significantly reduce debt over the next three years.

Meanwhile, other global share markets rose on optimism about U.S.-China trade and expectations of ample central bank stimulus before a speech by the Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell at the Jackson Hole symposium on Thursday.

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