BENGALURU, March 17 (Reuters) - Indian shares edged lower on
Wednesday as rising domestic COVID-19 cases weighed on
sentiment, while investors globally awaited the outcome of a
U.S. Federal Reserve policy meeting.
By 0549 GMT, the blue chip NSE Nifty 50 index shed
0.18% to 14,884, while the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex was
down 0.08% at 50,324.79.
India is dealing with a fresh surge in COVID-19 cases, with
daily COVID-19 infections jumping by 28,903 on Wednesday, the
highest increase since Dec. 13.
Expanded lockdowns in certain states due to rising cases is
a concern for the market, said Rahul Sharma, market strategist
and head of research at Equity99 in Mumbai.
A rise in bond yields has also limited gains for Nifty and
Sensex this month to about 3%, compared to a 6.6% jump in
"The RBI may have to do a fine balancing act to keep the
bond yields at lower levels while managing the government's
borrowing program," Sharma added.
The Nifty energy index was the top loser,
shedding 1.57% as heavyweight Reliance Industries Ltd
The high-flying Nifty IT index was the only major
sector trading in the black, rising 0.35%.
SBI Cards and Payment Services Ltd fell as much as
4.4%, after the Mint newspaper reported https://bit.ly/3txERj1
that U.S. private equity firm Carlyle Group Inc will sell
a stake worth up to 37.30 billion rupees ($514.18 million) in
the Indian credit card distributor.
Investment company Aditya Birla Capital Ltd gained
as much as 5.1% after its board gave an in-principle approval to
explore an initial public offering for its investment management
joint venture with Canada's Sun Life Financial.
($1 = 72.5425 Indian rupees)
(Reporting by Anuron Kumar Mitra in Bengaluru; Editing by