Nifty, Sensex little changed; oil retailers slip

Last Updated: Tue, Jan 02, 2018 12:09 hrs
A man looks at a screen across the road displaying the Sensex on the facade of the Bombay Stock Exchange building in Mumbai

Mumbai: Indian shares were flat on Tuesday as caution prevailed ahead of corporate results due later this month, while oil retailers such as Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd fell after crude prices strengthened.

Indian shares started off the new year on a weak footing, after ending 2017 with their biggest annual gains in three, as investors braced for corporate results including from Tata Consultancy Services Ltd and Infosys Ltd next week.

The government is gearing up to unveil its 2018/19 budget in early February, which will be followed by the Reserve Bank of India's policy meeting.

"Markets could be subdued because of upcoming domestic events," said Gaurang Shah, head investment strategist, Geojit Financial Services.

The broader NSE Nifty was up 0.01 percent at 10,436.50 as of 0552 GMT.

The benchmark BSE Sensex was 0.02 percent lower at 33,807.53.

Nifty PSU bank index dropped as much as 2 percent to its lowest since Dec. 18, with Bank of Baroda Ltd and Union Bank of India Ltd losing 1.5 percent each.

Oil marketing companies traded lower after crude prices gained. Brent crude futures hit $67.27 a barrel, their highest since May 2015, amid large anti-government rallies in Iran and ongoing supply cuts led by OPEC and Russia. Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd was down 2.7 percent while Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd lost 1.9 percent.

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