July 30, 2019 / 5:05 AM / 3 months ago

Nifty, Sensex edge higher tracking broader Asia

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Indian shares edged higher on Tuesday, tracking broader Asia ahead of a widely expected rate cut by the U.S. Federal Reserve.

Gardeners work outside the National Stock Exchange (NSE) building in Mumbai, August 16, 2018. REUTERS/Francis Mascarenhas/Files

The Fed begins its two-day policy meeting later in the day, at which it is widely expected to lower interest rates by 25 basis points. If implemented, it would be the central bank’s first rate cut in a decade.

The broader NSE Nifty was up 0.32% at 11,224.85 as of 0455 GMT, while the benchmark BSE Sensex rose 0.31% to 37,803.38.

“The positive open follows mildly positive U.S. markets on Monday and largely positive Asian markets this morning,” said Deepak Jasani, senior vice president at HDFC Securities.

“Some beaten-down stocks of Monday are seeing some bounce.”

Banks and financials led the gains, with the Nifty Bank index and the Nifty Finance index rising 0.5% each. ICICI Bank was among the top gainers with a rise of 1.2%.

State Bank of India, the country’s biggest lender, tightened lending terms for auto dealers as it sought to reduce its exposure to the crisis-ridden sector, Reuters reported on Monday.

The move, however, did not dampen investor sentiment on the sector. The Nifty Auto index was up 0.4%, after it touched an over three-year low on Monday.

Sector heavyweights Maruti Suzuki and Tata Motors were up 0.5% and 0.8%, respectively.

Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, which reported better-than-expected earnings on Monday, saw its stock rise slightly over 1%. Cipla Ltd was up nearly 2%.

Among losers, Indiabulls Housing Finance Ltd extended its fall from Monday after a lawmaker alleged embezzlement by the company to the tune of 1 trillion rupees ($14.54 billion).

Meanwhile, shares of Coffee Day Enterprises Ltd plunged 20%, after the founder and largest shareholder in the company went missing under mysterious circumstances on Monday.

($1 = 68.7730 Indian rupees)

Reporting by Derek Francis in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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