Indian shares closed lower on Tuesday on profit booking ahead of state poll results even though some of the Asian markets were up ahead of the March policy review by the US Federal Reserve, which is widely perceived to hike interest rates.
The Sensex opened in the green and touched 29,098 while Nifty came near 8,978 but slipped into the red. Sensex closed down 49 points or 0.17% at 28,999.56 while Nifty fell 0.2% to end at 8,946.90.
Adani Ports led the Sensex chart gaining 1.8% while TCS and ONGC were up 1.3% each, HDFC Bank 0.6% and GAIL 0.4%.
Analysts expect see-saw trade ahead of state assembly election results of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Goa, Manipur and Uttarakhand scheduled to come out on Saturday.
A win in UP will bolster Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s chances of winning the second term when the Lok Sabha elections are held in 2019.
The benchmarks ended a winning streak after hitting two-year high on Monday following approval of two crucial bills by the GST Council on Saturday, paving the way for the country’s biggest tax reform through a Goods and Services Tax.
On Tuesday, Asian stocks gained despite weak Wall Street, which slipped on concerns about US President Donald Trump’s ability to roll out fiscal stimulus.
The MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was flat after gaining 0.36% on Monday. Japan’s Nikkei was down 0.2%, while Hang Seng gained 0.36%, Kospi 0.6%. Strait Times was down 0.45% and Shanghai 0.34%.
On Monday, US stocks fell as much as 0.37% after Trump signed a revised executive order banning citizens from six Muslim-majority countries from travelling to the United States for 90 days.
The dollar was slightly up over a possible Fed rate hike in Mach 16, while political uncertainties over the French presidential election roiled the euro.
The dollar edged up against a basket of six major peers to 101.68 after touching one-week low of 101.22 on Monday as investors braced for Fed rate hike at its meeting next week. On Friday, Fed chief Janet Yellen said that raising interest rates this month would be appropriate, if jobs and inflation data hold up.