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Indian shares pressured by metal sell-off

BENGALURU, May 20 (Reuters) - Indian shares were weighed down by metal stocks on Thursday, after China sought stricter control of commodity markets to curb “unreasonable” increases in prices, sparking a broad-based correction.

Both the NSE Nifty 50 index and the S&P BSE Sensex traded in a narrow range as Asian peers paused with investor risk appetite declining over inflationary worries.

Investor sentiment, which was upbeat at the start of the week, took a hit on Wednesday after global stocks receded.

By 0409 GMT, the Nifty 50 was down 0.22% at 14,989.55 and the Sensex was 0.08% lower at 49,865.05, dragged down by a near 4% drop in metal stocks - the most among sectoral indexes - after China said it would step up adjustments on the trade and stockpiling of commodities.

Minutes from the U.S. Federal Reserve’s last policy meeting flagged the possibility of a debate on scaling back asset purchases, sending U.S. shares lower overnight.

Among gainers, lender ICICI Bank and IT major Infosys rose nearly 1% each.

Meanwhile, India’s new coronavirus infections stayed below the 300,000 mark and deaths backed off from record highs. (Reporting by Chandini Monnappa in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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