Indian stock-index futures were little changed after the nation’s economic growth slowed and tensions over Russia’s intervention in Ukraine intensified.
SGX CNX Nifty Index futures for March delivery fell 0.1 percent to 6,271.50 at 10:51 a.m. in Singapore. The underlying CNX Nifty Index on the National Stock Exchange of India Ltd. gained 0.6 percent to 6,276.95 on Feb. 28. The S&P BSE Sensex rose 0.6 percent. The Bank of New York Mellon India ADR Index of U.S.-traded shares dropped 0.5 percent.
India’s economic growth slowed last quarter, holding below 5 percent and denting the Congress party’s chances of extending its decade-long rule in national elections due by May. The U.S. is weighing sanctions against Russia, the world’s largest energy exporter, after President Vladimir Putin got lawmakers to endorse troop deployments and Ukraine said soldiers were already in the Crimea region.
“No one likes conflict between two superpowers,” Ambareesh Baliga, managing partner of global wealth management at Mumbai-based Edelweiss Financial Services Ltd., said in a phone interview. “It is possible that investors would stay away from the markets till this uncertainty goes away.”
India’s gross domestic product rose 4.7 percent in the three months ended Dec. 31 from a year earlier, compared with 4.8 percent in the previous quarter, the Statistics Ministry said in New Delhi on Feb. 28. Reserve Bank of India Governor Raghuram Rajan raised interest rates three times since taking charge in September, saying curbing inflation is the best way to generate sustained long-term growth.
HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics Ltd. are scheduled to publish India’s manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index for February today.
The Sensex has retreated 0.2 percent this year and trades at 13.6 times projected 12-month earnings, compared with the average multiple of 14.5 over the past five years. The MSCI Emerging Markets Index is valued at 10.2 times.
Overseas funds bought a net $91.4 million of Indian shares on Feb. 26, taking this year’s inflows to $309.3 million, data compiled by Bloomberg show. They bought $20 billion last year, the most in Asia after Japan, the data show.
declined as Asian shares and U.S. equity futures retreated on an escalation in geopolitical concerns after Russia’s occupation of Ukraine’s Crimea region.