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Sensex, Nifty end modestly higher as RBI policy meet begins

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MUMBAI: Benchmark equity indices ended marginally higher on Tuesday as investors remained on the sidelines as the RBI’s monetary policy review meeting got under way.

After trading in a range through the day, the 30-share Sensex ended 34.07 points, or 0.09 per cent, higher at 36,616.81. Similarly, the NSE Nifty edged up 22.10 points, or 0.20 per cent, to 10,934.35.

In the Sensex pack, Hero MotoCorp, IndusInd Bank, Bajaj Auto, Maruti and M&M were the top gainers, rising up to 2.66 per cent.

On the other hand, Tata Motors, Coal India, ONGC, Tata Steel, Yes Bank, Sun Pharma, ITC and ICICI Bank fell up to 2.63 per cent.

Investors were cautious, awaiting cues from the Reserve Bank of India’s monetary policy review, traders said.

The RBI’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) Tuesday began its three-day meet to decide on key rates amid expectations that it would change stance to neutral on low inflation but may not cut rates due to fiscal challenges and rising oil prices.

Broader indices, however, ended in the red, with the BSE Midcap and Smallcap sliding up to 0.91 per cent.

Sectorally, realty, metals and FMCG indices ended in the red, while auto and financial services ended higher.

On a net basis, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) sold shares worth a net of Rs 112.13 crore Monday, and domestic institutional investors (DIIs) were net sellers to the tune of Rs 65.22 crore, provisional data available with BSE showed.

Elsewhere in Asia, Japan’s Nikkei slipped 0.19 per cent. Bourses in China, South Korea, Singapore and Indonesia remained closed for the Lunar New Year.

In the Eurozone, Frankfurt’s DAX was up 0.83 per cent, while Paris CAC 40 rose 0.77 per cent in late morning deals. London’s FTSE surged 1.12 per cent.

The rupee, meanwhile, rebounded 4 paise against the US dollar to 71.76 intra-day.

The benchmark Brent crude futures rose 0.64 per cent to USD 62.91 per barrel.

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