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Indian shares extend losses as private-sector lenders fall

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Indian shares extend losses as private-sector lenders fall
BENGALURU, Feb 19 (Reuters) – Indian shares inched lower on Friday and were on course to close the week lower after two weeks of gains, dragged down by private-sector lenders ICICI Bank and HDFC Bank as investors continued to book profits after recent run-ups.

The NSE Nifty 50 index.NSEI was down 0.45% at 15,057.15 by 0348 GMT, while the S&P BSE Sensex. BSESN was 0.46% lower at 51,089.95. Both indexes were down for a fourth straight session.

The top three drags on the Nifty 50 were lenders ICICI Bank ICBK. NS, HDFC Bank HDBK.NS and Kotak Mahindra KTKM.NS, each shedding about 1%.

Private-sector banks.NIFPVTBNK rallied in early February before investors began selling this week. For the month, they are still up 14.8%.

Shares of Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd MAHM.NS slipped more than 1% after a Reuters report that Ford Motor (NYSE: F) F.N had frozen all projects it was working on with the Indian carmaker. India’s state-run banks .NIFTYPSU continued their rally, adding 2.3% in early trade, and were on track to finish the week 16.3% higher.

Oil India Ltd OILI.NS gained 4% after the company in consortium with Engineers India ENGI.NS decided to bid for acquiring a 61.65% stake in BPCL’s Numaligarh Refinery Ltd. Asian peers pulled back from record peaks, as rising bond yields and disappointing U.S. jobless data hurt investor confidence about a speedy economic recovery from the pandemic. MKTS/GLOB

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