Photo: The Hindu Business Line

Chennai, India (BBN) – The benchmark BSE index Sensex ended down by nearly 70 points as investors remained cautious ahead of RBI monetary policy decision, while weak global cues also weighed on the domestic sentiment.

The Monetary Policy Committee headed by RBI Governor Urjit Patel started its two-day deliberations today amid several experts saying that the central bank is unlikely to lower the key interest rate and will stay focused on controlling inflation, reports The Hindu Business Line.

The Reserve Bank of India’s monetary policy committee is likely to keep the policy repo rate on hold in the upcoming monetary policy review on account of various factors.

The 30-share BSE index Sensex ended lower by 67.28 points or 0.2 per cent at 32,802.44 and the 50-share NSE index closed down by 9.5 points or 0.09 per cent at 10,118.25.

Among BSE sectoral indices, power index fell the most by 1.06 per cent, followed by metal 0.85 per cent, capital goods 0.62 per cent and consumer durables 0.61 per cent. On the other hand, banking index was up 0.38 per cent, oil & gas 0.16 per cent and healthcare 0.09 per cent.
Top five Sensex gainers were State Bank of India (+1.92%), Bharti Airtel (+1.18%), Reliance (+1.11%), Sun Pharma (+0.52%) and ICICI Bank (+0.38%), while the major losers were Hero MotoCorp (-2.31%), Wipro (-2.29%), Tata Steel (-1.71%), NTPC (-1.7%) and Dr Reddy’s (-1.61%).
“The market is a little cautious ahead of the RBI policy decision and that’s quite sentimental in nature. There has been some sell-off in the global markets of late, which hasn’t happened in India. So some correction is in line with Asian markets as well,” said Sumit Pokharna, deputy vice president at Kotak Securities.
“Any news on interest rates has direct bearing on financial stocks, impacting everything from yield to cost of borrowing for these financial companies,” said Pokharna.
Asian shares were subdued as investors’ rotation out of technology shares took the toll on some of the region’s tech heavyweights although hopes of a major tax cut in the United States underpinned risk sentiment.
MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan were capped by the fall in the region’s technology shares, with Samsung Electronics losing 1.5 per cent. Japan’s Nikkei fell 0.4 per cent, with semiconductor-related shares such as Tokyo Electron and Shin-etsu Chemical leading the losses.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average had reached a record high on Monday, with banks and retailers surging and technology companies falling as investors realigned their portfolios in hopes of benefiting from expected corporate tax cuts.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.24 per cent to end at 24,290.05 points, while the S&P 500 lost 0.11 per cent to 2,639.44. Earlier in the session, the S&P 500 had touched a record high. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 72.22 points to end at 6,775.37.