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Indian shares flat, but head for biggest weekly loss in five
December 23, 2016 / 7:15 AM / in 10 months

Indian shares flat, but head for biggest weekly loss in five

* NSE index up 0.01 pct, BSE index 0.08 pct higher

* Shares on track to snap seven sessions of losses

* Pharmaceutical stocks among top gainers

By Arnab Paul

Dec 23 (Reuters) - Indian shares were flat amid subdued volumes on Friday, but the key indexes were headed for their biggest weekly drop in five as emerging markets remain under pressure due to foreign investor outflows.

Donald Trump’s victory in the U.S. presidential election held last month has sparked outflows from emerging markets, with foreign institutional investors selling a net $413.55 million in Indian shares this month as of Dec. 21.

“Lack of buying has been a major factor in the market’s performances of late,” said Deven Choksey, managing director at KR Choksey Securities.

“We’ll probably see a short change before the derivatives expiry next week but nothing substantial until the impact of demonetisation (India’s action to ban higher-value banknotes) is clearer and the annual budget is announced.”

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi scrapped 500-rupee and 1,000-rupee banknotes on Nov. 8 in a bid to flush out cash earned through illegal activities, or earned legally but never disclosed to the taxman.

The NSE index was up 0.01 percent at 7,987.55 as of 0704 GMT, but was down 1.95 percent for the week, on track for its biggest weekly fall since the week ended Nov. 18.

The broader NSE index has fallen in each of the previous seven trading sessions, marking its longest losing streak in 1-1/2 years, falling as well over lingering fears on the impact of scrapping higher-value banknotes.

The BSE index was trading 0.08 percent higher at 26,000.96, but was down 1.80 percent for the week.

Trading volumes this week are at their lowest since the week ended Oct. 14.

Among gainers, Sun Pharmaceutical Industries rose 2.2 percent after the drug maker said on Thursday it had acquired Novartis AG’s cancer drug, Odomzo.

Consumer goods stocks were among the top decliners, with Jubilant Foodworks falling as much as 2.13 percent to its lowest in nearly 5 years.

In Asia, stocks stepped back in subdued trade on Friday as Wall Street took a breather from its relentless rise since the U.S. election, while the dollar hovered below the 14-year high set earlier this week. (Reporting by Arnab Paul; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath)

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