Noon: Markets led down by Infosys and ICICI

Noon: Markets led down by Infosys and ICICI

Mumbai: Indian shares fell on Thursday morning as Asian markets weakened on doubts about the pace of global recovery and worries about the risk of steps to temper capital inflows weighed on sentiment.

Infosys Technologies, ICICI Bank and Reliance Industries, which together account for more than 30% of the main index, led the fall.

“Fatigue seems to be taking a toll on the bulls," brokerage India Infoline said in a note to clients. “The trouble is there are no great events in the near term that could trigger a big push towards new highs," it said.

Anxiety over economic recovery and not-so-compelling valuations of leading stocks after the market’s 75%-plus gain this year could lead to some cooling, the brokerage said.

At 1:11pm, the 30-share BSE Index was down 0.8% 16884.94 , with 23 components declining, after a flat start. The 50-share NSE index was 0.63% down at 5020.05.

“If stocks have to go up, dollar has to stay weak. But that does not seem to be the case, which is hurting the stocks," said Deven Choksey, managing director of K. R. Choksey Shares, who did not expect a sharp fall.

Foreign fund inflows of more than $15 billion have powered the market’s rise this year, but there could be some slowdown into the end of the year, analysts said.

Other emerging markets have also seen a surge in inflows, prompting some, including Brazil and Taiwan, to impose controls. Finance Secretary Ashok Chawla said India was not planning to cap overseas borrowing by corporates, and while flows were being monitored they were not yet a concern.

Top lenders State Bank of India was down 1.1% and second-ranked ICICI Bank fell 1.7%.

“For banks, there have been concerns over the credit growth outlook. Also the overall weak market is adding to the negative sentiment," Choksey said.

Energy giant Reliance Industries fell 0.5% to Rs2,093, while Infosys lost 1.6% to Rs2,395.

In the broader market, 1,268 gainers led 1,105 losers, with 120 million shares changing hands on the Bombay Stock Exchange.