Stock markets continue to trade on a strong note. Sensex advanced nearly 215 points to 28,018 and Nifty hit 8,611 for first time since August 2015.
Equitas Holdings shares surged as much as 5.5 per cent on Monday after the microfinance lender reported 64 per cent year-on-year jump in its net profit. Chennai-based Equitas Holdings posted a net profit of Rs 61 crore compared to Rs 37 crore in the corresponding quarter of last year, beating estimates.
Equitas' robust earnings growth was led by healthy disbursements in microfinance, used commercial vehicles and micro enterprise loans, the company said in a release to Bombay Stock Exchange.
Indian stock markets are likely to get support from Asian stocks, which edged higher on hopes of a fresh round of Bank of Japan stimulus later this week. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.1 per cent to stand just below its nine-month peak hit on Thursday. Japan's Nikkei rose 0.4 per cent.
Meanwhile, US stock prices marked four straight weeks of gains last week, supported by renewed strength in the tech and telecom sectors and a stronger-than-expected report on manufacturing. The S&P 500 set another record closing high on Friday.
Foreign institutional investors continued their buying streak in domestic stock markets. On Friday, they bought cash shares worth Rs 438 crore. Domestic institutional investors however were net sellers to the tune of Rs 366 crore.
Corporate earnings will continue to be in focus, with companies such as Bajaj Corp, Canara Bank and Indiabulls Housing Finance, Info Edge reporting Q1 numbers today.
Private lender Axis Bank, which reported a surge in Q1 bad loans on Friday, is likely to make a weak start today. Axis Bank said net profit fell 21 per cent from a year earlier to Rs 1,556 crore, missing analysts' estimate.
Vedanta will also be in focus after it offered to sweeten the terms for taking over subsidiary Cairn India after an initial bid had been stymied for a year.
Under the new offer, Vedanta will give one share and four redeemable preference shares for each share in Cairn India. Earlier it was offering one share and one redeemable preference share for each Cairn share.
Earlier, the Sensex had closed 93 points or 0.33 per cent higher at 27,803 on Friday, while the Nifty ended 31 points up at 8,541.