The Sensex fell on Thursday to its lowest close in one-and-a-half months, led by a decline in banking stocks, after government estimates showed FY13 growth could be worse than expected, while drugmaker Cipla Ltd
India's slowest growth in a decade could be worse than anticipated preliminary data released on Thursday showed. The economy is set to grow 5.0 percent in the fiscal year ending next month, compared with central bank's forecast of 5.5 percent.
Caution also prevailed as investors awaited the European Central Bank's policy meeting later in the day and President Mario Draghi's views on the region's growth outlook.
Analysts say consolidation is expected to continue ahead of the 2013/14 budget to be announced later this month, which is seen as a key test of the government's commitments to shore up its finances.
"The market perhaps wants to consolidate before any next move, ahead of the Budget, which can be a bit populist," said Vijay Kedia, director at private wealth management firm Kedia Securities.
The key things to watch for now are how many more reforms come and how soon they get implemented, to stoke growth and avoid rating cuts, added Kedia.
0.3 percent, or 59.40 points, to end at 19,580.32, falling for a sixth day to mark its biggest losing streak since November 21, 2011.
The broader Nifty fell 0.34 percent, or 20.40 points, to end at 5,938.80.
Bank stocks such as ICICI Bank Ltd
Shares in Cipla Ltd
State-run power utility NTPC Ltd
NTPC's weight in MSCI India index would rise from 0.63 percent to 1.79 percent as the company's free float stock increases after its offer for sale, Citigroup said in a note, quoting MSCI.
Shares in Ambuja Cements Ltd
Strides Arcolab Ltd
Telecoms shares fell, tracking the sixth straight monthly fall in India's mobile phone subscriber base which declined by a net 25.88 million, or 2.9 percent, in December.
However, among the stocks that gained, auto components maker Bharat Forge
Shares in ACC Ltd