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Indian shares post first fall in five days amid North Korea woes

MUMBAI (NewsRise) -- Indian shares fell Tuesday, snapping a four-day winning streak, as rising geopolitical tensions triggered by North Korea's latest missile test damped demand for risk assets across the globe.

The BSE Sensex fell 1.1%, or 362.43 points, to 31,388.39, while the broader NSE index declined 1.2%, or 116.75, to close at 9,796.05. State-owned power producer NTPC declined 2.8% to 168.50 rupees, leading the losses on the Sensex. On Monday, the government said it will sell a minimum 5% stake in the power producer with an option to sell an additional 5% at a floor price of 168 rupees apiece through a two-day offer for sale that began Tuesday.

Hindustan Petroleum and agrochemical-maker UPL added at least 0.2% after being added to the National Stock Exchange's Nifty 50 index. Bajaj Finance, also due to be added to the gauge on Monday, fell 2.8%. ACC lost 1.1%, while Bank of Baroda and Tata Power, which are being removed from the index, slipped at least 2%.

The Nikkei Asia300 Index was down 0.2% as risk assets took a beating after North Korea fired a missile over Japan that landed in the Pacific Ocean earlier in the day. The move comes weeks after a war of words between U.S. President Donald Trump and Pyongyang over rising military threats from the isolated state.

"Global factors are pushing the market down," said Akash Jain, vice president, equity research, Ajcon Global Services. Indian equities will likely move in a range in the near-term since there are no major triggers for the market, he said.

On Tuesday, 30 of the 30 Sensex constituents ended lower, while overall declining issues beat advancing ones 1784 to 789 while 136 remained unchanged.

Housing Development Finance Corp. led the losses, falling 2.2%. Index heavyweight Reliance Industries dropped 2.2%, while HDFC Bank shed 0.8%.

Infosys fell 1.5% to 927.55 rupees, its first decline in five days as investors booked profits.

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries declined 2.4% to 481.15 rupees. Nomura lowered the stock's target price to 479 rupees from 600 rupees. Nomura said it prefers Lupin among large-cap drug makers. Lupin ended 0.2% lower after gaining almost 1% earlier.

Glenmark Pharmaceuticals declined 1.9% after Nomura cut its target price to 856 rupees from 966 rupees.

RBL Bank rose 4.1% to 531.40 rupees. About 5% of the company's equity changed hands in two block deals on the BSE, Bloomberg Quint reported.

Reliance Infrastructure jumped 3% to 497.70 rupees. Clean energy company Greenko is in talks with the company to acquire its Mumbai electricity business for as much as 130 billion rupees ($2 billion), the Economic Times reported, citing unnamed people aware of the discussions.

Coal India fell 2.1% to 238.20 rupees. The company's projected profitability will likely drop at least 9% after conceding to a 20% wage hike and other benefits, Business Standard reported, citing trade union sources.

State-owned Vijaya Bank declined 3% to 68.50 rupees after it launched a share sale to institutional investors at a floor price of 66.36 rupees apiece.

--Dhanya Ann Thoppil

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