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Indian shares fall for 4th session; split views on rate cut
July 16, 2012 / 11:04 AM / 5 years ago

Indian shares fall for 4th session; split views on rate cut

* India’s main BSE falls 0.6 pct to lowest close in July

* Some interest rate sensitive stocks fall ahead of RBI review

* Tata Motors falls after disappointing JLR sales

By Abhishek Vishnoi

MUMBAI, July 16 (Reuters) - India’s main BSE index fell for a fourth consecutive session on Monday to post its lowest close in July as doubts about whether the central bank will cut rates hit some interest rate-sensitive stocks such as DLF.

India said June headline inflation rose a lower-than-expected 7.25 percent from a year ago, but core inflation was estimated at 4.85 percent, unchanged from levels in May.

Traders are split about whether Reserve Bank of India will deliver a cut in the repo rate at its July 31 policy review, especially since weaker-than-expected rain falls during the monsoon season are raising concerns about higher food prices.

The government is also expected to tackle policy reforms after presidential elections on Thursday. Action such as raising diesel prices to lower India’s subsidy burden would help sentiment, but could also raise inflationary worries.

“Inflation figures would not change a thing for RBI, as core inflation, although looking under control, has not come off substantially,” said Sandeep J. Shah, chief executive officer at Sampriti Capital.

The 30-share BSE index fell 0.64 percent to 17,103.31 points, to mark its lowest close since June 28.

The 50-share NSE index lost 0.57 percent to end at 5.197.25 points.

A rally in Indian stock markets has stalled in July, as investors have booked profits in some outperformers, while caution has set in ahead of the RBI meeting and ahead of any potential government measures.

After surging 7.5 percent in June, the BSE index has fallen 1.9 percent this month, compared with a 0.9 percent fall in the MSCI Asia-Pacific index excluding Japan.

DLF, India’s biggest property firm, fell 1.35 percent, reflecting the uncertainty about the outlook for interest rates.

Bank shares ended mixed. Government-owned State Bank of India rose 1 percent, but private lenders ICICI Bank fell 0.6 percent, while HDFC Bank lost 0.75 percent.

Among other decliners, Infosys dropped 2.6 percent, and has now fallen 12.1 percent over the past three sessions, as the software services exporter still reels from disappointing earnings results out on Thursday.

Rival Tata Consultancy Services, which posted better earnings, fell 3.4 percent, after gaining 1 .1 percent on Friday.

Goldman Sachs on Monday trimmed its global technology spending forecast to 3 percent from 4 percent for calendar year 2012, citing lower economic growth in advanced economies, and a lower global fixed investment forecast.

Tata Motors shares fell 2.8 percent after the auto maker said its unit Jaguar Land Rover sold 28,215 vehicles in June, below market expectations for 29,000 units.

However, among gainers, shares in Bharti Airtel rose 3.77 percent on expectations for a favourable decision as the federal ministry meets on Wednesday to decide on which prices to charge for 2G radio airwaves at an upcoming auction.

Lupin shares rose 3 percent after Citigroup raised its target price to 640 rupees from 570 rupees, saying the drug maker would see “healthy” growth and “improved profitability” in each of its key markets at home, the United States, and Japan.

FACTORS TO WATCH * Euro drops to six-week low versus yen

* Oil holds above $102 on China stimulus hopes

* Debt worries hit euro, German bonds gain

* Foreign institutional investor flows * For closing rates of Indian ADRs

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