(Bloomberg) — Most Indian stocks fell, with the benchmark index poised to retreat from a record, as some investors judged recent gains to be excessive.
Tata Motors Ltd., owner of Jaguar Land Rover, and Housing Development Finance Corp., the biggest mortgage lender, dropped after climbing to an all-time high yesterday. Idea Cellular Ltd. retreated after its profit fell short of estimates.
Three shares fell for every two that rose on the S&P BSE Sensex, which lost 0.1 percent to 29,531.29 at 10:40 a.m. in Mumbai. The Sensex closed at a record for a fifth day yesterday as foreign investors bought $ 1.24 billion of shares this month on optimism Prime Minister Narendra Modi will extend his reform agenda to spur growth. The surge sent the index’s valuations to a four-year high and its relative strength index to 75, above the level some investors see as a signal to sell.
“The market should take a breather as there has been a sharp up-move in the last eight sessions,” Ajay Bodke, head of investment strategy and advisory with Prabhudas Lilladher Pvt., said in an interview on Bloomberg TV India today.
Tata Motors lost 2.2 percent, while Cipla retreated 1.5 percent. Housing Development Finance fell 0.4 percent. Bharti Airtel Ltd., India’s largest mobile-phone operator, tumbled 2.4 percent, the most on the Sensex. Larsen & Toubro Ltd., the top engineering company, decreased 1.1 percent.
Idea Cellular dropped 0.2 percent. The company said after trading ended yesterday that its third-quarter profit surged 64 percent to 7.67 billion rupees, missing the 7.96 billion rupees estimated by analysts.
Titan Co., the jewelry retailer controlled by the Tata Group, climbed 2 percent. The company said after markets closed yesterday that third-quarter profit climbed 16 percent to 1.91 billion rupees ($ 31.1 million), matching the median forecast of 21 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
Foreigners bought $ 347 million of local shares on Jan. 23. The Sensex trades at 16.4 times projected 12-month earnings, versus the MSCI Emerging Markets Index’s multiple of 11.6.
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