Reserve Bank of India
Reserve Bank of IndiaReuters file

India's foreign exchange reserves rose for the second consecutive week in January, after falling for three straight weeks earlier.

The country's foreign exchange reserves rose by $1.59 billion to $349.15 billion for the week ended 29 January, 2016, according to the weekly statistical supplement issued on Friday by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

The increase was mainly due to an increase in foreign exchange assets that were up by $1.58 billion to $326.63 billion.

Gold assets remain unchanged at $17.40 billion.

FII, DII activity

Meanwhile, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) were net sellers of equities to the tune of Rs 606 crore on Friday, according to the provisional data released by the National Stock Exchange (NSE).

Domestic institutional investors were net buyers of equities valued at Rs 760 crore.

Stock markets up

Indian stock markets extended their gains on Friday, led by banking and pharma stocks. The S&P BSE Sensex closed at 24,616.97, up 278 points, or 1.14 percent, while the broad-based NSE Nifty settled at 7,489.10, with a gain of 85 points, or 1.15 percent. 

Lupin Pharma was the biggest Sensex gainer after the company declared a better-than-expected third quarter results. Other major Sensex gainers included Axis Bank (up 4.40 percent), Cipla (up 3.58 percent), and Tata Steel (up 3.47 percent).

Rupee closes lower

The rupee closed at 67.64 to the US dollar on Friday, down from its previous close of 67.54 on sustained dollar demand from importers and banks.