Sensex falls 31 points in early trade ahead of RBI policy meet

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Sensex fell by 30.86 points, or 0.15 per cent, to 20,072.49. (Reuters) Sensex fell by 30.86 points, or 0.15 per cent, to 20,072.49. (Reuters)
SummarySensex fell by 30.86 points, or 0.15 per cent, to 20,072.49.

The BSE benchmark Sensex fell by nearly 31 points in early trade today as funds and investors adopted a cautious approach ahead of RBI policy meeting amid a weak Asian trend.

The 30-share barometer fell by 30.86 points, or 0.15 per cent, to 20,072.49 with stocks of oil and gas, consumer durable and realty trading in the negative.

The wide-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty declined by 7 points, or 0.12 per cent, to 6,067.80.

Brokers said restricted commitments by participants ahead of the Reserve Bank of India's monetary policy review, to be announced later today, and a weak Asian trend mainly influenced the trading sentiments.

In the Asian region, Japan's Nikkei Index fell by 0.68 per cent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng index declined by 0.07 per cent in early trade. The US Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.10 per cent lower yesterday.

Stocks to watch-Jan 29

(Reuters): GLOBAL MARKETS ROUND UP

Nifty futures on the Singapore Exchange fell 0.09 percent. The MSCI-Asia Pacific index, excluding Japan was up 0.7 percent.

Asian shares rose on Tuesday after solid U.S. data, but investors remained cautious ahead of more U.S. economic reports and a Federal Reserve policy decision later in the week.

The S&P 500 eased slightly on Monday after an eight-day run of gains, while the Nasdaq edged higher as Apple shares rebounded.

FACTORS TO WATCH

RBI's policy review (decision at 0530 GMT)

Earnings: Idea Cellular Ltd, Reliance Capital Ltd, Sterlite Industries (India) Ltd

FINANCIAL/REGULATORY

India's central bank said a sustained commitment to contain the fiscal and current account deficits was needed to create room for monetary easing.

Axis Bank Ltd is selling shares to raise as much as $1 billion, two sources with direct knowledge of the matter said on Monday.

The government is likely to make it easier for foreigners to prove their residency for claiming benefits under bilateral tax treaties, said a finance ministry official who did not wish to be named.

ENERGY/COMMODITIES

The finance ministry has asked the petroleum ministry to price motor and kitchen fuels at export parity, in a policy shift that would bring relief to fuel consumers and the economy but shake up the domestic oil retail market.

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd has decided to sell 100 percent stake in Abbot Point Coal Terminal in Australia to the Adani family, said B Ravi, the company's chief financial officer.

India will look into the reasons behind the delay in Posco's proposed $12 billion steel plant in Odisha, according to a statement from the Commerce Ministry after South Korea termed clearance to the project as key to enhanced economic ties between the two nations.

Oil and Natural Gas Corp Ltd may not achieve any additional crude oil production this fiscal and just about reach last fiscal year's levels due to delay in commissioning of some of its marginal assets, according to Chairman Sudhir Vasudeva.

AIRLINES

A section of Jet Airways India Ltd's technicians started a "symbolic" protest by wearing black bands last Friday against the "management's proposed move to freeze wage hike over the next two-three years," sources among the agitators said.

A Jet Airways spokesperson was quoted by PTI as saying the airline "has always adopted a conciliatory open-door policy with all its staff, including technicians."

PROPERTY/INFRASTRUCTURE

Tata Realty and Infrastructure plans to float a real estate investment trust or a business trust in Singapore, a top official told the Financial Chronicle newspaper.

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