Indian shares edged lower on Friday, as profit booking set in following four days of consecutive gains. The rupee dropped against the dollar, tracking weakness in the euro and Asian markets retreated on concerns about further slowdown in China's economic growth, weighing on investor sentiment.
Meanwhile, U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's much-awaited testimony to Congress brought no major breakthrough as he offered no hint of imminent monetary stimulus in his prepared remarks. Brent crude prices fell below $99 in Asian trading today after the Fed signaled no immediate measures to boost U.S. growth. The euro weakened on continued concerns about Europe after ratings agency Fitch slashed Spain's credit rating by three notches.
After gaining nearly 700 points in the past four sessions, the benchmark 30-share Sensex is currently trading down 76 points or 0.46 percent at 16,573, while the broader Nifty index is down 27 points or 0.53 percent at 5,023.
Reliance Industries is down 0.9 percent after holding its annual general meeting yesterday. NMDC is declining a percent on reports that it has dropped a proposal to acquire a stake in an Australian phosphate mine.
Cipla is down a percent after the company said it has lost an appeal in a U.S. court over a patent case against Merial, a unit of French giant Sanofi, regarding an animal healthcare product. Cairn India is moving down 1.6 percent as crude prices tumbled on dimmed hopes for U.S. stimulus.
India Cements is tumbling 3.5 percent on reports that the CBI has summoned its MD N Srinivasan in connection with YSR Congress chief Jagan Mohan Reddy's disproportionate assets case.
Tata Teleservices is losing 1.5 percent on reports that it has written to the Department of Telecommunications opposing the government's plan to levy higher spectrum charges irrespective of the validity of the license.
Tech Mahindra is gaining 2.5 percent as it received shareholder nod for the merger of Mahindra Satyam with itself. Shares of Mahindra Satyam are up half a percent.
Benchmark indexes Sensex and the Nifty rose over a percent each to one-month highs on Thursday, as the rupee's strength on talk of the government giving a big push to infrastructure development and positive global cues on continued hopes of stimulus measures from major central banks underpinned sentiment.
by RTT Staff Writer
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