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Sensex Closes 238 Points Lower, Nifty Gives Up 10,700; ITC Down Over 2%

NDTV Profit logo NDTV Profit 17-05-2018 NDTV Profit Team

The BSE Sensex fell 238 points to close at 35,149 on Thursday. Losses were led by bank, energy and FMCG stocks. National Stock Exchange (NSE) benchmark index Nifty declined 58 points to settle at 10,682. Doubts whether the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) could prove its majority in Karnataka weighed on investor sentiment. Top laggards on the Nifty 50 included HDFC, Axis Bank Hindalco Industries, UPL and ITC, finishing with losses of 2-3 per cent each.

State BJP president B S Yeddyurappa was sworn in as chief minister on Thursday morning even though his party fell short of an outright majority. He has now 15 days to prove his majority in the state legislative assembly.

The state election had a temporary effect on the markets, but macro-economic factors such as the rise in crude oil prices and inflation will have a bigger say in the medium term, said analysts.

Retail inflation accelerated for the first time in four months in April, suggesting the Reserve Bank of India may turn hawkish at its policy meeting next month.

"There are also concerns over foreign institutional investments," said Deepak Jasani, head of retail research at HDFC Securities.

Foreign investors, who have been net buyers of equities worth $766.24 million this year as of May 16, sold shares worth a net Rs 699 crore on Wednesday.

Equities in other Asian markets fell marginally. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.22 per cent.

ITC settled 2.4 per cent lower, a day after the country's largest cigarette maker posted a better-than-expected quarterly profit of Rs 2933 crore in January-March quarter.

Housing Development Finance Corp fell as much as 1.7 per cent, while Reliance Industries Ltd declined 1 per cent.

Muthoot Finance Ltd fell as much 7.6 per cent after the company reported weak quarterly revenue from financing.

Tata Steel Ltd fell as much as 3.1 per cent after the company posted a quarterly profit on Wednesday on the back of a one-off pensions gain.

Among the gainers, Divi's Laboratories Ltd rose as much as 4.1 per cent after a unit in Telangana did not receive any 483 observations following an inspection by the US Food and Drug Administration.

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