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Markets trade flat, Bharti Airtel top loser

Bharti Airtel is the top Sensex loser, down over 4% led by weak Q1 results

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Key share indices continue to trade in a narrow range, oscillating between negative and positive terrain, after government data showed lower-than-expected Index of Industrial Production (IIP) for June. India's industrial production contracted 1.8% in June, driven down by a slump in manufacturing, government data showed on Thursday.

At 12:50, the 30-share was down 9 points at 17,592 and the 50-share dipped 4 points at 5,334.

On the global front, Asian shares rose to a three-month high on Thursday after a drop in Chinese consumer inflation left room for more policy easing to support growth, while Australia's improving labour market kept the country in better shape without stimulus for now. Nikkei, Hang Seng, Taiwan, Kospi and Shanghai have gained between 1-2%.

Back home, BSE FMCG, Metal, IT and Auto indices have gained by almost 1% each. However, BSE Capital Goods index has declined by nearly 1%.

FMCG majors like ITC and HUL have gained between 1-2%.

Metal shares like Sterlite, Coal India and Hindalco have gained between 1-3%.

Software shares like TCS, Infosys and Wipro are up nearly 1%.

From the Auto space, M&M has extended Wednesday’s rally and is the top Sensex gainer, up over 3% triggered by strong Q1 results. Bajaj Auto and Maruti Suzuki have gained by almost 2%.

On the losing side, shares of capital goods companies have erased their early morning gains and are currently trading lower by 1-3% after capital goods sector witnessed a degrowth of negative 27.9% in June 2012 versus positive 38.7% recorded in June 2011. The manufacturing, which constitutes about 76% of industrial production, contracted to -3.2% in June 2012 from 2.5% in May 2012 and 10% in June 2011.

Meanwhile, the index of industrial production (IIP), a key measure of industrial output, fell 1.8% in June 2012 from a year earlier, while it’s much lower than 2.4% growth reported in the month of May. Analysts expected a 1% growth for June. L&T and BHEL have declined by nearly 1%.

Bharti Airtel is the top Sensex loser, down over 4% led by weak Q1 results. Bharti Airtel shares fell for a second day to a two-year low as banks including Goldman Sachs and Standard Chartered cut their ratings on India's top telecoms carrier in the wake of disappointing quarterly earnings.

Tata Motors has declined by nearly 1% on profit booking after witnessing sharp rally in previous three sessions.

Other notable losers include HDFC, RIL, JSPL, Tata Steel and Dr Reddy’s Lab.

Among individual shares, HEG Limited has soared 11% to Rs 226 after the company said its operating profit before exceptional items more than double to Rs 106 crore for the quarter ended June 30, 2012. The company had reported operating profit of Rs 44 crore in previous year quarter.

Meanwhile, Meanwhile, BSE Midcap index is almost flat whereas BSE Smallcap index is down 0.23%.

The market breadth in BSE remains unhealthy with 1,414 shares declining and 1,078 shares advancing.

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