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Indian shares little changed ahead of state elections results
March 9, 2017 / 6:24 AM / 7 months ago

Indian shares little changed ahead of state elections results

* NSE index down 0.11 pct, BSE index 0.05 pct lower

* Exit polls due out later in day

* Dr. Reddy‘s, GAIL (India) decline

By Darshana Sankararaman

March 9 (Reuters) - Indian shares were little changed on Thursday after two consecutive sessions of declines, as sentiment remained subdued ahead of the results of state elections, including that of the country’s most populous state of Uttar Pradesh.

Exit polls are due out around 1730 local time (1200 GMT), and have often been wrong in the past, but any clear trend showing Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in front could trigger buying by investors.

Actual results will be announced on Saturday, and will help to shape the next two years of Modi’s government as it heads for the 2019 general election.

“Markets are trading very cautiously ahead of the exit poll results this evening,” said Neeraj Dewan, director at Quantum Securities.

“A BJP win could take the market very close to the new high.”

The broader NSE index was down 0.11 percent at 8,914.80 by 0552 GMT, while the benchmark BSE index was 0.05 percent lower at 28,887.16.

Among the losers, Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd fell as much as 4.65 pct to its lowest since August 2014 after the U.S. drug regulator issued form 483 with 13 observations for a manufacturing facility at Visakhapatnam in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh.

GAIL (India) Ltd declined as much as 5.13 pct to its lowest since Feb. 15, as shares of the integrated energy company started trading ex-bonus. (Reporting By Darshana Sankararaman in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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