September 25, 2019 / 7:30 AM / 21 days ago

Nifty, Sensex track broader Asia lower on U.S. political worries

A broker reacts while trading at his computer terminal at a stock brokerage firm in Mumbai, February 26, 2016. REUTERS/Shailesh Andrade/Files

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Indian shares fell on Wednesday, tracking broader Asia as investors braced for prospects of a prolonged political uncertainty in the United States after the launch of a formal impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.

Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday launched a formal impeachment inquiry into President Trump, accusing him of seeking foreign help to smear Democratic rival Joe Biden ahead of next year’s election.

“After the news from the U.S., we might be on tenterhooks, but we as an economy do not have much to worry,” said Gaurang Shah, senior vice president at Geojit Financial Services. “The outcome remains to be seen.”

Compounding investors’ fears, Trump’s remarks at the United Nations Assembly on Tuesday accusing China of currency manipulation and intellectual property theft risked riling a tariff dispute that has embroiled global equities over the past year.

The broader NSE Nifty was down 0.64% at 11,511.45, as of 0406 GMT, while the benchmark BSE Sensex fell 0.69% to 38,818.06.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was down 0.82%.

Public sector banks and autos led the losses in India, with the Nifty PSU Bank Index shedding 2.16%, while the Nifty Auto Index declined 1.45%.

State Bank of India, the country’s biggest lender by assets, dropped 2.78% and was among the top decliners on the blue-chip NSE Nifty, while Tata Motors fell 3.13%.

Among gainers, Power Grid Corp rose 2.15%, while Reliance Industries and Tata Consultancy Services, the country’s top two most valuable companies, gained about 1% each.

Reporting by Derek Francis in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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