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Sensex, Nifty extend fall; Italy worries weigh

Indian shares declined on Wednesday tracking broader Asia as investors trimmed exposure to riskier assets amid a political crisis in Italy, with financial stocks such as ICICI Bank Ltd weighing on the

Published: 30th May 2018 12:43 PM  |   Last Updated: 30th May 2018 12:44 PM   |  A+A-

A broker reacts while trading at his computer terminal at a stock brokerage firm in Mumbai, India, February 26, 2016. | Reuters

By Reuters

Indian shares declined on Wednesday tracking broader Asia as investors trimmed exposure to riskier assets amid a political crisis in Italy, with financial stocks such as ICICI Bank Ltd weighing on the indexes.

Asian stocks extended a global sell-off as fears of repeat elections in the euro zone's third-largest economy saw the euro hitting a 10-month low, sending investors rushing to safe-haven assets such as U.S. Treasuries.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan tumbled 1.4 percent.

The broader NSE Nifty fell 0.38 percent to 10,592.40 as of 0646 GMT, while the benchmark BSE Sensex declined 0.37 percent to 34,821.65.

"This is a spillover from fall in global markets due to political situation in Italy. With crude prices falling and rupee firming, domestically, things have improved. But globally, the picture is still uncertain around Europe," said Neeraj Dewan, Director at Quantum Securities.

Financials fell, with heavyweights Housing Development Finance Corp and ICICI Bank Ltd falling 0.9 and 1.6 percent, respectively.

Among the decliners, shares of Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd fell 2.9 percent after the Mumbai-based drugmaker posted a 17 percent fall in quarterly profit on Tuesday.

Indian oil refiners and retailers also took a hit after Indian Oil Corp Ltd (IOC) slashed pump prices for petrol and diesel. State-run IOC, Bharat Petroleum Corp and Hindustan Petroleum Corp control most of the retail fuel market in India.

Shares of Bharat Electronics Ltd fell 3.9 percent after the company reported a 29 percent slump in March-quarter net profit on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Fortis Healthcare Ltd rose as much as 4.8 percent after it launched a new round of bidding for itself on Tuesday. The cash-strapped hospital operator's board is also scheduled to meet to approve quarterly results on Wednesday.


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