Shares opened lower on Thursday, led by IT stocks, after the Federal Reserve reiterated its fight against inflation even as it signalled it might soon pause interest rate hikes and as the U.S. treasury secretary ruled out insuring all banking deposits.
The Nifty 50 index was down 0.39% at 17,082, while the S&P BSE Sensex fell 0.45% to 57,948.52, as of 9:38 a.m. IST. The broader Asian equity indexes were subdued.
Eight of the 13 major sectoral indexes declined with high weightage financials and information technology (IT) stocks losing 0.5% and 1%, respectively. All 10 constituents of the IT index logged losses.
IT companies, which earn a significant share of their revenue from the United States and Europe, could be pressured by the uncertain banking sector outlook and an overall slowdown in client spending due to higher rates, analysts said.
Wall Street equities initially rose after the Fed raised rates by 25 basis points, as expected. The indexes then reversed course to end sharply lower after U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said the government is not considering 'blanket insurance' for all banking deposits, dashing hopes of a quick guarantee to stem the banking crisis.
Among individual stocks, Hero MotoCorp rose over 1% and was the top Nifty 50 gainer after the company announced a price hike in select two-wheeler models from April 1.
Hindustan Aeronautics lost nearly 6% after the government proposed to sell a stake of up to 3.5% in the company.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)