Mumbai, July 7: Taking a cue from Asian markets, key India equities on Friday opened in the red, a day after gaining new highs on Thursday. Sensex (sensitive index) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) opened at 31311.29 points, down by over 50 points from its previous close of 31,369.34 points.

Meanwhile, Nifty of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) that had closed one point shy of the 9700 mark on Thursday, also opened in the red and was trading at 9,657.95 points today, down by 9,657.95 or 0.17 per cent, during early morning trade on Friday. Trending stocks in the Indian markets were IDFC and Shriram Capital who are in talks of a merger, as well as Air India, that has announced a new Delhi-Washington flight, against the backdrop of privatization reports.

Some of the top performing stocks on BSE and NSE during the early morning trade on Friday included Lupin, Dr Reddy, Sun Pharma, Tata Power and Bharti Airtel. The top losers on the Indian indices were HDFC, ITC, ICICI Bank and Tata Motors. Tata Group and Bharti Enterprises are in the talks for a possible merger in telecom and DTH industry, the former of which has currently come to be increasingly dominated by Reliance Jio.

Jio has become a constant thorn in competition’s side, due to its disruptive pricing and new lower-than-ever tariff plans. There were reports of the company also launching a new feature phone with 4G facility, at a cost of just Rs 500. Rupee also strengthened marginally against the US dollar in the opening trade today, and was valued at 64.74 a dollar at the opening. It touched a high and a low of 64.73 and 64.75 respectively.