Markets turn cautious ahead of US Fed Policy Outcome

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The benchmark Sensex of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) gained nearly 200 points in early trade today only to turn cautious ahead of the US Federal Reserve policy announcement scheduled later in the day.

The 30-share barometer which opened 196.79 points higher, pared most gains and was trading up by 7.63 points (0.02 percent) at 35167.99.

Earlier the index had gained 659.09 points in the previous three sessions on the back of widespread gains triggered by encouraging corporate earnings and strong auto sales data amid record GST collections.

The broader 50-shares NSE Nifty too turned choppy and was trading 1.75 points (0.02 percent) lower at 10737.60.

Brokers said investor sentiment was cautious ahead of US Federal Reserve’s two-day policy meet outcome, as the central bank in March signaled that the path of future rate hikes could be slightly steeper over the next few years than previously thought.

Major laggards were Coal India, TCS, Infosys, ICICI Bank, HUL on Sensex today, falling up to 2 percent.

Shares of HCL Technologies too slumped as much as 5 percent in early trade on the stocks after the IT firm posted 9.8 percent decline in consolidated net profit for the quarter ended March 2018.

Top gainers were Kotak Bank, Hero MotoCorp, Maruti Suzuki, Adani Ports, Bajaj Auto, L&T, Axis Bank, HDFC Bank and Sun Pharma, rising up to 3.7 percent.

Meanwhile, on a net basis, Foreign Portfolio Investors (FPIs) sold shares worth Rs 385.47 crore, while Domestic Institutional Investors (DIIs) bought shares worth Rs 261.98 crore on Monday, a provisional data showed.

Financial markets were closed on May 1 on account of ‘Maharashtra Day’.

In other Asian markets, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was down 0.47 percent while Japan’s Nikkei shed 0.32 percent in early trade. Shanghai Composite Index too fell 0.16 percent.

The US Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.27 percent lower in yesterday’s trade.

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