Chennai, Dec 16 The downward pressure for domestic markets will continue amid gloomy global markets. Analysts expect the domestic markets to see a narrow movement with downward bias.

US stocks on Thursday plunged sharply as the US Fed reiterated its hawkish stance. Besides, weak economic data will also add pressure.

Edward Moya, Senior Market Analyst, The Americas OANDA, said: “Both the Empire manufacturing survey and Philly Fed business outlook showed factory activity is in a challenging environment. “

The economy is clearly in slowdown mode and businesses are still slow with layoff announcements. Labour market weakness will be more noticeable next year and that should help reduce some of the constant wage pressures westill see, he added.

US stocks have plunged over 2 per cent, while Nasdaq was the worst performer by 3.3 per cent. Asia-Pacific stocks were down over one per cent in early deals. SGX Nifty is hovering around 18,400, signalling a gap-down opening for the domestic markets.

Nagaraj Shetti, Technical Research Analyst, HDFC Securities, said: The short term trend for Nifty seems to have reversed down, after a small pullback rally recently. The immediate support is placed at 18,350 levels, and a move below this support could drag the index down to the next support of around 18,150-18,100 levels in the short term. Immediate resistance is placed at 18,550 levels.

Siddhartha Khemka, Head - Retail Research, Motilal Oswal Financial Services Ltd, said: “We expect the equity markets to remain sideways in a narrow range given weak global sentiments and the upcoming holiday season.”