Indian shares fall as investors book profits after sharp rally

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By Anuron Kumar Mitra

BENGALURU, Dec 15 (Reuters) – Indian shares fell on Tuesday after scaling record highs in 16 of the past 24 sessions, with investors locking in gains and broader sentiment being dented by weakness in Asian markets due to a surge in COVID-19 cases and restrictions.

By 0502 GMT, the blue-chip NSE Nifty 50 index fell 0.61% to 13,476 and the benchmark S&P BSE Sensex slid 0.66% to 45,945.68.

Both the indexes rallied sharply on record inflows from foreign institutional investors (FIIs) and progress on COVID-19 vaccines.

“The FII flows will moderate now as Christmas vacation approaches,” said Rusmik Oza, head of fundamental research at Kotak Securities in Mumbai. “Because markets have risen so sharply, there will be some pause and correction,” he said.

Meanwhile, government data on Monday showed November’s annual retail inflation eased to 6.93% after holding above 7% for two straight months. However, the elevated print leaves little scope for the Reserve Bank of India to cut rates. Asian markets dropped as increasing COVID-19 deaths and restrictions overshadowed vaccine-related enthusiasm. MKTS/GLOB

Reliance Industries fell 1% and was the top drag to the Nifty 50. The company’s telecom division has asked the Indian telecoms regulator to take action against rivals Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea for allegedly running a false propaganda campaign. was down 0.8% and Vodafone Idea dropped 2.5%.

The Nifty Bank Index fell 1.05%, with ICICI Bank declining 1.5%. The stock was among the top drags to the Nifty 50.

Kotak Mahindra Bank slipped 0.5%. The lender on Monday said https:// the central bank had approved the re-appointment of Uday Kotak as managing director and chief executive officer.

Burger King India rose 20% a day after the company’s shares more than doubled in their market debut.

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