Indian shares opened lower on Monday after four straight weeks of gains, weighed down by metal and auto stocks, while investors waited for cues from the U.S. Federal Reserve on its pandemic-era stimulus measures.
The blue-chip NSE Nifty 50 index was down 0.3% to 17,526.9 by 9:31 am, and the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex fell 0.24% to 58,876.84.
Market participants will be closely watching the Fed’s two-day meeting starting on Tuesday, where it is expected to lay the groundwork for a tapering of its bond buying programme.
Metal stocks dropped more than 3%, with Tata Steel skidding over 5% to be the top loser on the Nifty, while peer JSW Steel lost nearly 4%.
Future prices for steel making raw materials dropped on Friday as China, the world’s top steelmaker, indicated it could expand strict air pollution controls to more cities.
Broader Asian markets were lower in thin trade due to holidays in Japan, China and South Korea.