Indian shares subdued ahead of Fed chair speech; banks slip

FILE PHOTO: People walk past the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) building in Mumbai, India, November 4, 2020. REUTERS/Francis Mascarenhas

BENGALURU (Reuters) – Indian shares were little changed on Friday, with banking stocks falling the most, as caution kicked in ahead of Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s speech due later in the day.

By 0346 GMT, the blue-chip NSE Nifty 50 index was down 0.05% at 16,628.50, while the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex fell 0.07% to 55,910.04. For the week, the Nifty 50 index is set to gain, reversing last week’s losses.

The Nifty Bank index slipped 0.36%, while the Nifty IT index fell 0.22%.

Budget airline SpiceJet Ltd rose nearly 4% after the country’s air safety regulator cleared Boeing’s 737 MAX aircraft to fly with immediate effect on Thursday.

Asian shares were mixed as slight gains in China were balanced by declines elsewhere and investors globally turned cautious ahead of a long-awaited speech about tapering of the bond-buying program by Powell. [MKTS/GLOB]

A deadly attack in Afghanistan on Thursday, which killed scores of civilians and at least 13 U.S. troops, also dented global sentiment.

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