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India’s Nifty Futures Climb Before Central Bank Policy Meeting

Indian (SENSEX) stock-index futures gained, signaling benchmark indexes may rally from a three-week low, before the central bank meets today to review monetary policy.

SGX CNX Nifty Index futures for August delivery rose 0.3 percent to 5,893.5 at 9:44 a.m. in Singapore. The underlying CNX Nifty (NIFTY) Index slid 0.9 percent to 5,831.65 yesterday, the lowest close since July 10. The S&P BSE Sensex fell for a fourth day, the longest losing streak in two months. The gauge has added 1 percent this month. The Bank of New York Mellon India ADR Index of U.S.-traded shares lost 0.3 percent.

The Reserve Bank of India will leave the benchmark repurchase rate unchanged at 7.25 percent for a second consecutive meeting, according to 31 of 32 analysts in a Bloomberg survey, while 29 of 30 expect the reserve ratio to remain unchanged at 4 percent. RBI Governor Duvvuri Subbarao, whose term ends in September, raised two interest rates and drained liquidity this month to stabilize the rupee after the currency weakened to a record low.

“All eyes are on the RBI policy,” Kishor Ostwal, managing director at CNI Research Ltd., said by phone. “While no change in rates is expected, the tone and tenor of the policy will be keenly watched. Till then we will see stock-specific action based on newsflow and quarterly results.”

Jindal Steel & Power Ltd. (JSP) may report today quarterly net income of 7.24 billion rupees ($122 million), according to the median estimate of 18 analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

NTPC Ltd. (NTPC) may announce profit of 25 billion rupees for the three months ended June 30, according to 31 analysts in a Bloomberg survey.

Inflation Risks

Subbarao maintained interest rates at the last policy meeting in June, citing persistent inflation risks, after cutting the repurchase rate three times this year to spur an economy that grew at the slowest pace in a decade in the year ended March 31.

The Sensex ended a four-week rally last week after the RBI tightened banks’ access to cash on July 23 to steady the currency. The moves should not be seen as indicating a forthcoming major shift in monetary policy, Raghuram Rajan, the Finance Ministry’s chief economic adviser, said on July 25.

Four of the 13 Sensex members that have posted earnings so far for the June quarter missed analyst estimates. About 27 percent of companies in the measure missed forecasts for the three months ended March, and 43 percent in the quarter through December, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

The Sensex has gained 0.9 percent this year and trades at 13.8 times projected 12-month earnings, compared with the MSCI Emerging Markets Index’s 10 times.

Global funds bought a net $49.1 million of local shares on July 26, taking this year’s net purchases to $12.3 billion, data compiled by Bloomberg show. They have sold $1 billion of Indian stocks this month, the most among 10 Asian markets tracked by Bloomberg, extending June’s $1.8 billion sell-off.

To contact the reporter on this story: Santanu Chakraborty in Mumbai at schakrabor11@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Patterson at mpatterson10@bloomberg.net

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