Indian shares are seen opening slightly lower on Friday, tracking weak Asian cues after reports said some of China's biggest banks may fall short of their annual loan targets for the first time in seven years amid global economic slowdown and a weakening domestic economy. Shares across the region saw some early gains this morning after Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti said Greece will probably remain in the euro zone.
On Wall Street, stocks showed a lack of direction before ending the session mixed overnight, as traders seemed reluctant to make any significant moves amid some uninspiring U.S. economic data, including a report from the Commerce Department showing a drop by a key indicator of business spending.
A separate report from the Labor Department showed a modest decrease in initial jobless claims in the week ended May 19th. The tech-heavy Nasdaq ended down 0.4 percent, while the Dow rose 0.3 percent and the S&P 500 added 0.1 percent.
Closer home, shares rebounded sharply from two days of losses on Thursday, as a steep hike in petrol prices fueled speculation that the government may hike diesel and LPG prices very soon to cut the fuel subsidy bill and counter the perception of government inaction that has lowered the credibility of the UPA government among overseas investors.
The benchmark BSE Sensex ended up 274 points or 1.72 percent at 16,222, while the broader Nifty index rose by 86 points or 1.77 percent to 4,921.
The rupee, meanwhile, plunged to a fresh record low of 56.38 against the dollar before recovering sharply to finish at 55.64, helped by dollar selling by banks and as the RBI said it may sell dollars directly to oil marketing companies to curb the currency volatility.
Provisional data released by BSE shows that foreign institutional investors remained net sellers in Indian equities and offloaded shares worth Rs.105.73 crore yesterday, while domestic financial institutions bought shares to the extent of 130.02 crore.
by RTT Staff Writer
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