Indian shares fall further ahead of Fed meeting outcome

Stock Bombay Stock Exchange BSE
Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building in Mumbai, India. Indian shares declined further on Wednesday. Image Credit: Bloomberg

Mumbai: Indian shares declined further on Wednesday, weighed down by heavyweight Reliance Industries and financial stocks, with investors eyeing the US Federal Reserve’s policy statement due later in the day.

The blue-chip NSE Nifty 50 index fell 0.43% to 15,804.20 and the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex was down 0.29% to 52,620.97 by 0457 GMT. Both the indexes closed at a record high on Tuesday.

“The market might be reluctant to push higher ahead of the Fed meeting. The possibility of further upsides depends heavily on the continuation of liquidity. If the Fed were to tighten the screws on interest rates, there is a possibility that markets may not see that as favourable,” said Anand James, chief market strategist at Geojit Financial Services.

If the Fed signals an idea of interest-rate hikes, the Indian market could expect the Reserve Bank of India to follow suit due to the country’s higher inflation reading. This may not be positive, especially as more states ease curbs, he said.

In Mumbai trading, Reliance Industries Ltd and HDFC Ltd were the top drags on the Nifty 50, shedding 0.9% and 0.6%, respectively. Shares of Reliance have gained in the last five trading sessions out of eight.

The Nifty Bank Index and the Nifty Private Bank Index have so far risen more than 0.30% this week.

Tata Steel Ltd and JSW Steel Ltd were down 2.7% and 2.4%, respectively, driving the Nifty Metal Index 2.4% lower.

China has stepped up its campaign to rein in raw materials prices by expanding its oversight of commodities trading by state firms to overseas markets, Bloomberg News reported on Wednesday. In the broader Asian market, shares were subdued ahead of the Fed’s meeting.