Sensex falls; investors await RBI meet

By Tanvi Mehta

Indian shares reversed gains from the previous session's record highs to fall on Thursday, as investors waited for clues on which way interest rates are headed when India's central bank meets to deliberate on monetary policy later in the day. Although the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has pulled surprises at its last three policy meetings, analysts uniformly expect no change in interest rates, according to a Reuters poll.

Across the world, stocks fell with risk appetite soured after minutes of the U.S. Federal Reserve's last meeting showed most policymakers thought the central bank should begin trimming its $4.5 trillion balance sheet later this year, much earlier than many had expected. U.S. stock market futures fell 0.3 percent and MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was 0.8 percent lower.

"Market is awaiting what RBI does on the liquidity front and that has the potential to impact banks negatively, if there is an increase in CRR (cash reserve ratio)," said Dipen Shah, senior vice president and head of private client group research, Kotak Securities.

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