Indian shares hit 1-week low as pharma drags, Reliance falls 2%

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A woman passes near the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building in Mumbai, India on January 31, 2020. Businesshala/Francis Mascarenhas/File photo
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BENGALURU (Businesshala) – Indian shares touched their lowest levels in nearly a week on Wednesday, under pressure from pharmaceutical stocks and oil-to-chemicals conglomerate Reliance Industries falling 2%.

The blue-chip NSE Nifty 50 index fell 0.56% to 17,898.65 and the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex was down 0.52% at 60,008.33. Both the indices touched their lowest levels since November 11.

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After Strides Pharma Science and Glenmark Pharmaceuticals fell nearly 3%, leading losers, the Nifty Pharma index fell 1.3% to touch its lowest level in nearly three weeks.

Reliance and Axis Bank were the biggest losers on the blue-chip Nifty 50, falling around 2% each.

The Nifty Energy Index, a sub-index of oil and gas companies such as Reliance, Indian Oil Corporation and Adani Transmission, fell 0.5% following a fall in crude oil prices. [O/R]

Auto stocks rose 0.71%, helped by shares of Tata Motors and Maruti Suzuki India.

The sub-index has rallied this week over media reports of a handy chip shortage, with India’s finance ministry also saying on Wednesday that it expected an improvement in semiconductor supply.

In global markets, the dollar jumped on Wednesday, as strong US retail sales data raised bets on an earlier Federal Reserve rate hike. Shares in Europe posted diluted gains after Asian markets faltered due to COVID-19 concerns. [MKTS/GLOB]

Reporting by Vishwadha Chander in Bengaluru; Editing by Uttaresh.V and Amy Karen Daniels

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