Indian stock-index futures declined, signaling benchmark indexes may snap a three-day gain.
SGX CNX Nifty Index futures for April delivery fell 0.3 percent to 5,705 at 9:38 a.m. in Singapore. The underlying CNX Nifty (NIFTY) index rose 0.4 percent to 5,704.40 yesterday. The S&P BSE Sensex index added 0.2 percent. The Bank of New York Mellon India ADR Index of U.S.-traded shares slumped 1.4 percent, the biggest loss since March 21.
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index dropped after data on U.S. manufacturing missed estimates, prompting concerns the global economy is slowing. The Sensex slid 3 percent in the three months through March, the first drop in five quarters, amid the nation’s weakest economic expansion in a decade, widening deficits and the highest inflation among major emerging markets. India’s manufacturing growth slowed to a 16-month low in March, according to a report yesterday.
“Markets need the support of positive economic data for further action,” K.K. Mital, a fund manager at Globe Capital Market Ltd., said by phone from New Delhi yesterday. “The markets will continue to be range-bound until we see some policy initiatives from the government to revive investment and economic growth.”
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s government has since September pursued reforms to revive faltering growth, including opening up aviation and retail industries to attract more overseas capital, cutting subsidies and easing rules on foreign investment in rupee bonds. India may need more than $75 billion of foreign capital this year and next to fund the deficit, Finance Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram said in March.
India’s current-account deficit widened to a record $32.6 billion in the three months ended Dec. 31, data showed on March 29, as oil and gold imports surged, adding pressure on the government to extend its policy overhaul.
Foreign funds bought a net $104 million worth of Indian (SENSEX) stocks on March 26, extending this year’s purchases to $10.2 billion, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Inflows last year totaled $24.5 billion, the most among 10 Asian markets tracked by Bloomberg.
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