Indian shares fall in volatile trading; energy, metal stocks drop

Indian shares fell slightly in choppy trade on Tuesday, as cooling oil and metal prices dragged energy and steelmaker stocks, with a higher-than-expected inflation reading for February denting sentiment further.

By 0413 GMT, the blue-chip NSE Nifty 50 index was down 0.25% at 16,829.25 and the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex fell 0.22% to 56,360.95.

Government data on Monday showed India’s consumer prices rose 6.07% in February, above the central bank’s 2% to 6% target for a second straight month.

A continued slide in oil prices dragged the Nifty energy index by 1%. Oil and Natural Gas Corporation was the biggest percentage loser on the Nifty 50.

The Nifty Metal Index lost 2.07%. Steelmakers Tata Steel and JSW Steel fell about 2.3% each.

In broader Asian markets, stocks fell on surging COVID-19 cases in China and lack of major progress in Russia-Ukraine negotiations.

Domestic investors will also be focusing on the U.S Federal Reserve, which meets on Wednesday and is expected to hike interest rates for the first time in three years to offset rising inflation.

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