India’s benchmark stock index fell the most in two months as software exporters slid after four founders of Infosys Ltd. (INFO) pared their stakes.
Infosys tumbled the most in two months, the biggest loser on the S&P BSE Sensex. (SENSEX) Larger rival Tata Consultancy Services Ltd. (TCS) declined for a second day. Metal producers Sesa Sterlite Ltd. and Hindalco Industries Ltd. lost 2.6 percent each.
The Sensex declined 0.9 percent to 28,200.26 at 1:31 p.m. in Mumbai, extending last week’s 0.8 percent drop. The measure climbed to a record last month as foreigners bought a net $ 2.3 billion of shares amid optimism falling oil costs will give the central bank room to cut interest rates. The index’s valuation reached 15.98 times projected 12-month profits on Nov. 28, a two-month high, data compiled by Bloomberg show.
“The market has had a good run and valuations are high so it’s natural for some investors to book profits,” Chokkalingam G., managing director at Mumbai-based Equinomics Research Pvt., said by phone today.
Infosys retreated 4.7 percent to 1,973.90 rupees, the most since Oct. 8. The stock is set for a seventh day of loss, the longest stretch since February last year.
The founders and their family members sold 32.6 million shares at about 1,988 rupees apiece, the person said, asking not to be identified because the details are private.
Infosys has been the best-performing stock on the Sensex in the past two decades, having risen 64 times in value in the period versus a nine-fold gain in the benchmark, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
“Infosys founders are enjoying the fruits of wealth creation,” Chokkalingam said.
Tata Consultancy retreated 2.4 percent, paring this year’s gains to 16 percent. Sesa Sterlite, India’s biggest copper producer ended a four-day advance. Aluminum producer Hindalco declined for a fourth day.
The Sensex has risen 33 percent this year and is valued at 15.6 times projected earnings for the next 12 months, compared with the MSCI Emerging Markets Index’s multiple of 11.2, data compiled by Bloomberg show.
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