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India’s Nifty Futures Advance After Sensex Caps Five-Day Retreat

Indian stock-index futures climbed after the benchmark gauge capped its longest stretch of losses since January.

SGX CNX Nifty Index futures for May delivery rose 0.2 percent to 6,731 at 10 a.m. in Singapore. The underlying CNX Nifty Index on the National Stock Exchange of India Ltd. fell less than 0.1 percent to 6,694.80 on May 2. The S&P BSE Sensex lost 0.1 percent to 22,403.89, its fifth day of declines. The Bank of New York Mellon India ADR Index of U.S.-traded shares added 0.3 percent to 1,209.50.

The Sensex retreated 1.3 percent in five days after reaching a record on April 23 amid an election that opinion polls suggest will hand power to the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, ending the Congress Party’s decade-long rule. Results are due on May 16.

“All eyes remain on the big event,” Vinod Nair, head of fundamental research at Geojit BNP Paribas Financial Services Ltd., said by e-mail, referring to the upcoming polls results.

The MSCI Asia Pacific excluding Japan Index slipped 0.3 percent today after a private gauge of Chinese manufacturing contracted for a fourth month.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s Congress party may be headed for its worst-ever electoral performance as voters punish the government for a series of graft scandals, Asia’s fastest consumer inflation and slowing growth. The BJP is favored by investors seeking change to revive an economy expanding at the slowest pace in a decade.

Overseas investors bought a net $96.1 million of Indian shares on April 30, an eighth day of purchases, data compiled by Bloomberg show. That took this year’s inflows to $5.3 billion.

The Sensex has risen 5.8 percent this year and trades at 14 times projected 12-month profits, compared with the average multiple of 14.5 over the past five years. The MSCI Emerging Markets Index has lost 0.1 percent in 2014 and is valued at 10.5 times.

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