June 8, 2017 / 6:18 AM / 2 months ago

Indian shares flat tracking global cues ahead of ECB meet

2 Min Read

* NSE index down 0.08 pct, BSE index 0.11 pct lower

* Global events awaited - analyst

* Financial stocks gain

By Tanvi Mehta

June 8 (Reuters) - Indian shares traded flat on Thursday tracking Asian peers ahead of a slew of global events including the European Central Bank's policy meeting, U.K. elections and congressional testimony from ex-FBI director James Comey.

But banking shares such as HDFC Bank gained, after the Reserve Bank of India sharply cut its inflation projections and delivered a less hawkish policy statement, which raised expectations of potential rate cuts.

"Global equity markets are awaiting for the outcome of the three events and their impact on the risks and demand," said Deepak Jasani, head-retail research, HDFC Securities.

The broader NSE index was down 0.08 percent at 9,656.65 as of 0549 GMT, with Tata Steel Ltd as the top percentage gainer trading 3 percent higher.

The benchmark BSE index was 0.11 percent lower at 31,236.46.

Financial stocks pushed the indexes higher, with Kotak Mahindra Bank and HDFC Bank driving the gains after the Reserve Bank of India made it easier for India's stressed banks to lend, cutting their statutory liquidity ratio by 50 basis points to 20 percent of total deposits from June 24.

IT stocks fell and the Nifty IT index was down 1.2 percent. The index has risen nearly 3 percent this year, as of Wednesday's close.

Shares of Reliance Communications continued their slide, after the embattled mobile carrier pushed back against Moody's and Fitch, disagreeing with their rating downgrades earlier on Wednesday. Shares fell as much as 2.8 percent to their lowest in over a week.

Petronet LNG shares fell as much as 3.4 percent to their lowest in over two weeks after GDF International sold its entire 10 percent stake of 75 million shares, raising 31.5 billion rupees ($489.23 million), according to IFR. ($1 = 64.3875 Indian rupees) (Reporting by Tanvi Mehta in Bengaluru; Editing by Vyas Mohan)

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