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Indian shares dip on lingering U.S. inflation worries, auto sales data eyed

BENGALURU, May 12 (Reuters) - Financials dragged Indian benchmark stock indexes lower on Wednesday, as broader Asian markets extended a sell-off fuelled by concerns that a potential pickup in U.S. inflation could lead to interest rate hikes sooner than expected.

The NSE Nifty 50 index fell 0.45% to 14,784.55 by 0353 GMT, while the S&P BSE Sensex slipped 0.56% to 48,885.91.

Speculation that surging commodity prices and growing inflationary pressure in the United States could lead to earlier rate hikes and higher bond yields globally sent Asian shares to one-month lows.

In India, although the central bank is seen maintaining status quo on interest rates as data expected later in the day is likely to show retail inflation eased to a three-month low in April, investors are concerned about potential outflows of foreign funds.

The Nifty Financial Services index slid 1%, with top non-bank lender HDFC Ltd dropping 2.3%. The Nifty IT index slipped 0.6%.

Investors are also awaiting April auto sales data from the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers. The Nifty Auto index was largely flat. (Reporting by Chris Thomas in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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