Indian shares end at over 1-month low; ITC, ICICI fall

Tue Feb 5, 2013 4:58pm IST

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* BSE ends 0.46 pct down; NSE ends 0.51 pct lower
    * Shares fall about 2 pct in six sessions
    * Fitch warns India to stick to reforms, meet fiscal targets

    By Manoj Dharra
    MUMBAI, Feb 5 (Reuters) - Indian shares fell on Tuesday for
the fifth session in the last six sessions as renewed worries
about the euro zone hit global markets, spurring continued
profit-taking in recent outperformers such as ITC Ltd 
and ICICI Bank.
    Domestic shares have struggled ever since the Reserve Bank
of India surprised investors with a cautious stance on future
rate cuts on Jan. 29, dashing some of the optimism that
sustained monetary easing would boost economic growth this year.
    Investors are also cautious ahead of the budget, to be
unveiled later this month, which is seen as a key test of
commitment to shoring up finances. 
    Fitch Ratings said on Monday that India needs to commit to
its recent reform measures and meet its fiscal deficit targets,
putting further pressure on a government keen to retain
investment grade ratings.      
    "At a time when inflation remains high, diesel prices are
rising, we are looking ahead to how the finance minister
balances the gap between income and expenditure in the upcoming
budget. Till that time markets will continue to be in a narrow
range," said R.K. Gupta, Managing Director at Taurus Mutual
Fund.  
    The BSE index fell 0.46 percent, or 91.37 points,
to end at 19,659.82, marking its lowest close since Jan. 1.
Shares have fallen 1.94 percent in six sessions.
    The broader NSE index fell 0.51 percent, or 30.35  
points, to end at 5,956.90.
    Cigarette maker ITC Ltd fell 1.56 percent, after 
gaining 7.3 percent in January. ICICI Bank Ltd shares fell 1.33
percent, its third fall in four sessions.
    Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd shares fell 3.5
percent, extending their fall after the company's
October-December earnings on Friday disappointed investors.
 
    Jain Irrigation Systems Ltd ended 5.2 percent
lower, after the company reported a net loss of 311.7 million
rupees in the October-December quarter. 
    Jubilant Foodworks Ltd shares fall 8.5 percent,
after its December-quarter same store sales grew by 16 percent
versus expectations of 20 percent. 
    UCO Bank shares ended 5 percent lower after
reporting disappointing asset quality and rising provisioning
expenses. 
    However, Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd rose as
4.14 percent after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration
approved its generic version of ovarian cancer drug Doxil, made
by Johnson & Johnson in the U.S. market. 
    Shares in Sun also gained after subsidiary Taro
Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd posted a 42 percent
growth in October-December net profit. 
    Another blue chip drug maker, Cipla Ltd, gained 1
percent ahead of its third-quarter earnings on Wednesday.
    Shares in United Spirits Ltd gained 2 percent
after media reports that India's securities market regulator,
Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), has cleared
Diageo Plc's open offer for the Indian company.
    A SEBI spokesman told Reuters the regulator has issued final
observations on the offer but would not comment beyond that.

 (Editing by Anupama Dwivedi)
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