Mumbai, March 16 (IANS) After the US Federal Reserve hiked its benchmark interest rate a quarter point for the second time in three months, the Indian equity markets reacted positively and the key indices opened higher on Thursday.

The Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE, which had closed at 29,398.11 points on Wednesday, opened higher at 29, 482.83 points. Minutes into trading, it was quoting at 29,568.03 points, up by 169.12 points, or 0.53 per cent.

At the National Stock Exchange (NSE), the broader 51-scrip Nifty, which had closed at 9,084.80 points, was quoting at 9,138.85 points, up by 54.05 points or 0.59 per cent.

On Wednesday, heavy selling pressure in IT and Teck (technology, media and entertainment) stocks, coupled with disappointing macro-economic data dragged the Indian equity markets lower.

Besides, investors remained cautious ahead of the US Federal Open Market Committee’s (FOMC) meet on whether to raise interest rates, and India’s Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council meet on Thursday.

The Sensex was down by 44.52 points or 0.15 per cent at the Wednesday’s closing. In the day’s trade, the barometer 30-scrip sensitive index had touched a high of 29,500.08 points and a low of 29,358.91 points. The Nifty, too was down by 2.20 points or 0.02 per cent.

On Thursday, Asian indices were showing a positive trend except Japan’s Nikkei 225 which is trading in red. Hang Seng was up by 1.11 per cent while South Korea’s Kospi was in green, up by 0.51 per cent. China’s Shanghai Composite index was quoting in green, up by 0.63 per cent.

On a positive note, Nasdaq closed in green, up by 0.73 per cent while FTSE 100 was also up by 0.15 per cent at the closing on Wednesday.