June 6, 2018 / 6:04 AM / 4 months ago

Indian shares rise ahead of cenbank decision on rates

* NSE index up 0.40 pct, BSE index 0.42 pct higher

* Value buying seen across sectors

* RBI policy meeting outcome later in the day

By Jessica Kuruthukulangara

June 6 (Reuters) - Indian shares perked up on Wednesday, as value buying set in ahead of a decision on monetary policy by the central bank where it is widely expected to keep benchmark interest rates on hold.

An increasing number of economists expect the Reserve Bank of India to raise interest rates, a Reuters poll showed, but most still think it will stay put and use this week’s meeting to prepare for a rate increase in August.

An unexpected surge in inflation and economic growth rates have brought forward expectations for the next rate hike by more than a year, when just over a month ago, the RBI wasn’t expected to raise rates until the second half of 2019.

The broader NSE index was up 0.40 percent at 10,635.65 as of 0556 GMT, while the benchmark BSE index was 0.42 percent higher at 35,048.48.

“There is expectation of some relief move from the RBI meeting, while the early onset of the monsoon is also giving some kind of support,” said Anand James, chief market strategist at Geojit Financial Services.

“Three days of selling have found some fresh buyers, because of which there is value buying happening at lower levels...”

The Nifty PSU bank index jumped as much as 1.7 percent, after posting three straight sessions of losses. State Bank of India, the country’s largest lender, rose 1.4 percent.

Bajaj Auto Ltd climbed over 3 percent, reversing two sessions of declines and was the top gainer on the NSE index. Bajaj Finance Ltd and Bharti Airtel Ltd were up more than 2 percent each after both stocks fell in five out of the last seven sessions.

IDFC Bank Ltd soared as much as 5.1 percent after it received a “no objection” from the central bank for acquiring Capital First Ltd, which was up 3.7 percent.

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries rose 2.6 percent after CLSA Research upgraded the stock to “buy” following positive Q4 results.

Reporting by Jessica Kuruthukulangara in Bengaluru; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath

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