BSE Sensex drop for second day from record high; focus on fundamentals
(Reuters) - BSE Sensex fell on Wednesday, continuing to retreat from record highs at the start of the week, as investors took profits in blue chips such as Tata Motors ahead of inflation data.
The report on consumer prices on Thursday will be followed by the wholesale price inflation on Monday, which will help set expectations ahead of the Reserve Bank of India's policy review on Dec 18.
Consumer prices were forecast to have risen an annualised 10 percent annually last month, a Reuters poll showed, barely changed from the 10.09 percent clocked in October.
Tackling inflation will be a key priority, RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan said on Wednesday, raising expectations that the central bank could raise interest rates for a third time in four months if prices remained high.
"The only logical recourse in the market would be to consolidate at these levels as the focus shifts back to fundamentals which are not great at the moment,' said P. Phani Sekhar, fund manager at Angel Broking.
The benchmark BSE index fell 0.39 percent, or 83.85 points, to end at 21,171.41, retreating further from a record high of 21,483.74 hit on Monday.
The broader NSE index fell or 0.39 percent, or 24.95 points, to end at 6,307.90, lower than its record high of 6,415.25, also on Monday.
Recent outperforming blue chips led the decliners for a second day. Tata Motors Ltd fell 3.3 percent, while DLF Ltd ended 2.1 percent lower.
Among state-owned banks, State Bank of India Ltd ended lower 2.5 percent, while Bank of Baroda Ltd fell 2.4 percent.
Capital good makers fell on caution ahead of industrial output data due out on Thursday.
Larsen and Toubro Ltd ended lower 1.8 percent, while Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd fell 2.1 percent.
However, NTPC Ltd gained 2.4 percent after executives at the utility assured investors it would hold consultations with regulators after draft guidelines on electricity were seen hurting returns in the sector and sent its shares down 11.4 percent on Tuesday.
United Breweries Ltd gained 2 percent after the