Sensex drops 162 pts to two-month low

The Sensex today tumbled 162 points, extending its losing run to the sixth day, on fag-end selling after Reserve Bank of India dashed hopes of a rate cut and Samajwadi Party's sudden announcement of candidates for 2014 polls made investors nervous over the political situation.

After a better start at 18,563.32, the Sensex erased early gains of around 92 points after selling in rate-sensitives gathered pace in the last half hour of trading.

RBI Governor D Subbarao said in Pune that at 7.45 per cent inflation is certainly "quite high". Traders said after headline inflation fell to an 8-month low in October, investors had hoped for a rate cut. However, Subbarao's comments poured cold water on such hopes, they added.

The sentiment took a further hit when Samajwadi Party announced the first list of candidates for 2014 polls, taking everyone by surprise.

"The market also feels Mulayam Singh Yadav's Samajwadi Party has revived the possibility of early elections by releasing the first list of candidates at least 15-18 months before polls are scheduled," said Rikesh Parikh, VP Equities, Motilal Oswal Securities.

The 30-share Sensex finally closed 162 points.

Rupee falls 46p to 55.16/USD

The rupee today weakened by 46 paise to close at a fresh 2-month low of 55.16 on the back of a surge in US dollar demand from importers and sustained weakness in local stock market. The rupee commenced lower at 54.85 a dollar from its previous close of 54.70 at the Interbank Foreign Exchange market and immediately touched a high of 54.83. However, it later turned weak and fell to a low of 55.16 on a strong dollar in overseas market amid investors winding up positions in global equities, said traders.

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