Indian shares hit record high as banks, Reliance gain

BENGALURU, Dec 3 (Reuters)Indian shares rose to a record high on Thursday, led by finance stocks and market heavyweight Reliance Industries, as upbeat coronavirus vaccine developments fuelled risk appetite globally.

The NSE Nifty 50 index .NSEI climbed 0.45% to 13,173.15 by 0349 GMT and was on course for a third straight session of gains, while the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex .BSESN was up 0.39% at 44,792.01.

Boosting sentiment was news that Britain became the first Western country to approve a COVID-19 vaccine, with doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine available for those at high risk starting next week.

In Mumbai, the Nifty Bank Index .NSEBANK climbed nearly 1% after sliding 1.2% in the previous session. Top private-sector lender HDFC Bank Ltd HDBK.NS was the biggest boost to the indexes, rising as much as 1.6%.

India’s largest company by market value, Reliance Industries Ltd RELI.NS, rose nearly 1% to its highest in more than a week.

Data released late Wednesday showed India’s trade deficit in November narrowed 21.93% from a year earlier, as imports fell sharply compared to the drop in exports.

(Reporting by Chris Thomas in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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