* Shares in Indian housing finance companies gain after marketregulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) sayswill allow debt-oriented mutual funds to invest up to 10 percentof their net assets in companies in the sector.
* Previously housing finance companies had been included as partof SEBI's broader 30 percent cap on debt investments in thefinancial sector.* As a result, funds had typically preferred to invest in biggerfinancial companies, such as lenders and insurers.* Giving housing finance companies their own cap on investmentsshould steer money into the sector and lower funding costs,analysts say.* HDFC Ltd
gains 0.6 percent, LIC Housing Finance
rises 1.5 percent, while Dewan Housing Finance
also gains 2.4 percent.