The BSE benchmark index Sensex on Friday dropped by 240.10 points from record high levels, posting its second biggest drop this year due to profit booking by investors and concerns that RBI may keep its policy rates high to control inflation.

Weak global trends following poor economic data in the US and China also impacted the market sentiment.

The 30-share index closed at 21,133.56 points, down by 240.10, or 1.12 per cent - the biggest loss since January 2.

The barometer had closed at record high levels in the previous two sessions on the back of strong corporate earnings.

Profit booking was triggered by RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan comments that inflation was a “destructive disease” that was forcing the bank to keep interest rates high, brokers said. “The point is inflation is hitting the growth in the long run. There can be no trade-off. There is need to bring inflation down,” Dr Rajan had said on Thursday.

The broad-based National Stock Exchange index Nifty fell by 78.90 points, or 1.24 per cent, to settle at 6,266.75.

“Markets did react to the weak economic data in China and US,” said Dipen Shah, Head-Private Client Group Research, Kotak Securities.

Interest rate sensitive stocks suffered the most, with the BSE realty index dropping the most by 3.19 per cent.

Capital Goods index fell by 2.68 per cent, Consumer Durables index by 2.65 per cent and banking index by 1.88 per cent.

Among major Sensex losers, BHEL dropped by 3.39 per cent, Tata Motors by 3.26 per cent and ICICI Bank by 1.96 per cent.

Among 30 Sussex shares, 27 declined.

Only three Sensex stocks - Reliance Industries, NTPC and Bajaj Auto - gained and saved the market from further fall.

Trading sentiment also dampened as drug maker Ranbaxy Laboratories tumbled by 19.33 per cent after the US regulators banned it from producing or selling drug ingredients for the American market from a fourth plant in India.


Inflation a destructive disease, says RajanJanuary 23, 2014

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