Indian shares jump on economic growth data, widening vaccination drive | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 02, 2021 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:07 AM, March 02, 2021

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Indian shares jump on economic growth data, widening vaccination drive

Indian shares closed higher on Monday after the country kicked off an expansion of its COVID-19 vaccine campaign and data showed that the economy returned to growth in the December quarter.

The NSE Nifty 50 index gained 1.6 per cent to end at 14,761.55, while the S&P BSE Sensex closed 1.53 per cent higher at 49,849.84.

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Both the indexes slumped nearly 4 per cent on Friday as rising bond yields sparked a massive sell-off in global equities.

But with bond yields easing from last week's peaks and the US House passing a $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package, the MSCI world equity index firmed 0.5 per cent on Monday.

Aiding sentiment at home was news that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was inoculated with the first dose of a home-grown coronavirus vaccine, beginning an expansion of the country's immunisation drive.

Meanwhile, data on Friday showed that the country's gross domestic product grew 0.4 per cent in October to December, compared with a revised contraction of 7.3 per cent in July to September.

Private sector lenders were the top boost to the Nifty. The Nifty private bank index advanced 1.4 per cent, led by a 3.7 per cent jump in Kotak Mahindra Bank.

The Nifty media index gained the most among sectoral indexes, closing 4.3 per cent higher.

The Nifty auto index added 2.4 per cent, with carmaker Maruti Suzuki India rising 2.2 per cent after it reported a near 12 per cent rise in February sales.

Bharti Airtel ended down 4.3 per cent and was the sole decliner on the Nifty 50. Rival Vodafone Idea finished 1.77 per cent lower.

The losses came after Reliance Jio said on Friday it would offer mobile phones and unlimited services for two years at 1,999 rupees ($27.16).

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