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Markets end lower on dismal March IIP

ITC, Infosys top losers

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ended lower on Friday as the disappointing March Index of Industrial Production which contracted by 3.5% raised concerns over economic growth.

The provisionally ended down 120 points at 16,300 and the down 37 points at 4,929.

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(Updated at 14:32hrs

After a drop in the late morning trades owing to the disappointing IIP data, the markets have recovered some of its lost ground owing to the gains in index heavyweights like Reliance Industries, Tata Motors and SBI. The Sensex is down 34 points at 16385 while the Nifty has lost nine points at 4957.

Earlier in the day, the BSE benchmark index touched the day's high at 16,395 and the day's low at 16,234.The Nifty had seen a high of 4,976 and a low of 4,906.

In the broader markets, the midcap and the smallcap indices are down 0.3% and 0.7% respectively underperforming the Sensex which is up nearly 0.2%

India's industrial output unexpectedly fell in March for the first time in five months, driven by a slump in the capital goods sector. According to the release, March IIP data was at -3.5% with the capital goods segment contracting the most at -21.3%. Commenting on the numbers, Gokarn said that a sharp contraction in India's industrial output in March reinforces the slowdown trend in the country.

In the international markets, all the Asian markets closed in the red. The Nikkei share average sank below 9,000 for a sixth straight week of losses, with a choppy earnings season. The index closed at 8,953, down 0.6%. Hong Kong shares tumbled for a seventh straight day, after China's April inflation figures were largely in line with estimates, further dousing hopes of near-term easing despite signs of a steeper slowdown. The Hang Seng Index slipped 1.3 percent to 19,965.Kospi and Taiwan were the other notable losers, down 1%.

Following the global cues, the European markets opened in the red but recovered shortly. CAC and FTSE are up 0.1 and 0.2%, respectively while DAX is down 0.3%.

Among the sectoral indices, Health Care and IT are down 1% are the major laggards in the afternoon trades. However, Bankex and Auto indices recouped early losses and added nearly 1% each.

Auto majors, Tata Motors, Bajaj Auto up 3% each are the top gainers among the Sensex stocks followed by BHEL, SBI, DLF, Hero MotoCorp, Reliance Industries and ICICI Bank up 1% each.

On the losing side are Sun Pharma, Tata Power, Maruti Suzuki, ITC, ONGC, Infosys and Hindalco down 1-3%.

Among individual stocks, JSW Steel is down 4% at 632 after the Supreme Court ordered a probe by the CBI against JSW Steel and two other companies for alleged involvement in illegal iron ore mining in Karnataka.

Cadila Healthcare is up nearly 2% at Rs 765 on posting healthy fourth quarter results.

The market breadth continues to remain the negative. On the BSE, 1678 stocks declined as compared to 928 advances.

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