February 15, 2013 / 11:34 AM / 5 years ago

Indian shares fall to 2013 lows; midcaps hit by earnings woes

* BSE index falls 0.15 pct; NSE ends 0.16 pct lower
    * Midcap shares fall on disappointing earnings, outlook
    * Tata Motors shares rebound on JLR sales hopes

    By Abhishek Vishnoi
    MUMBAI, Feb 15 (Reuters) - Indian shares fell on Friday to
their lowest levels in 2013 as drug maker Dr. Reddy's retreated
a day after reporting a larger-than-expected fall in quarterly
earnings, while software service exporters fell on
    However, Tata Motors rose 2.4 percent, recovering
from an earlier fall of as much as 3.1 percent, as traders saw
the initial losses sparked by a drop in quarterly earnings as
overdone given expectations for a recovery in profits at
subsidiary Jaguar Land Rover. 
    Analysts say sentiment remains cautious ahead of the 2013/14
budget to be unveiled on Feb. 28, amid fears it would include
populist spending measures that could threaten the government's
fiscal deficit target.
    "With industrial output data and inflation numbers out,
there is no key development expected till the budget, so the
market is expected to remain range-bound in the absence of any
macro data before the build-up to the budget starts," said
Kaushik Dani, fund manager at Peerless Mutual Fund.
    India's annual wholesale price inflation slowed
to 6.62 percent in January, government data showed on Thursday,
lower than the 7 percent expected in a Reuters poll of
    The benchmark BSE index fell 0.15 percent, or 29.03
points, to end at 19,468.15, its lowest close since Dec. 31,
    The index fell 0.08 percent for the week, its third weekly
    The broader NSE index fell 0.16 percent, or 9.55
points, to end at 5,887.40. It earlier hit its lowest since Dec.
26, 2012 and dropped 0.27 percent for the week. 
     Dr. Reddy's Laboratories , India's No.2
drug maker by sales, fell 3 percent after it reported a
larger-than-expected 29.2 percent drop in quarterly net profit
on Thursday. 
    Bank of America Merrill Lynch downgraded Dr. Reddy's to
"neutral" from "buy", saying "a slight" increase in core profit
estimates was being offset by a fading U.S. drug pipeline and
moderating growth. 
    Software service exporters fell on profit-taking, with
Infosys ending down 0.9 percent after rising 2.1
percent in the previous two sessions, while Tata Consultancy
Services fell 0.4 percent a day after touching its all
time high of 1,455.80 rupees.
    Shares in DLF Ltd fell 2 percent a day after
India's largest listed real estate developer reported a net
profit of 2.85 billion rupees, missing market expectations.
    Indian midcap shares fell on a mix of disappointing earnings
and worries about the economic outlook. Analysts expect midcap
shares to remain weak until risk sentiment improves.
    Suzlon Energy Ltd fell 8.6 percent after the wind
turbine maker said its quarterly net loss had widened to 11.55
billion rupees. 
    United Breweries (Holding) Ltd shares ended 4.95
percent down. UB Group, the parent of debt-laden Kingfisher
Airlines, said it was in talks with lenders to the
carrier to cut their exposure by using proceeds from a stake
sale in a group company to Diageo Plc. 
    Besides Tata Motors, among the gainers was Bharti Airtel
, India's largest telecoms carrier, whose shares ended
1.6 percent higher, up from a steep fall of 4.4 percent on
    Jet Airways rose 3.7 percent on speculation that a
long-awaited deal to sell a stake to Abu Dhabi's Eithad Airways
would be announced next week, dealers said. 
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   FACTORS TO WATCH                                             
* Euro slips to 3-week low versus dollar                  
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* Foreign institutional investor flows          
* For closing rates of Indian ADRs                       
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 (Additional reporting by Manoj Dharra; Editing by Prateek
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