July 16, 2018 / 7:34 AM / a year ago

Indian shares edge lower; pharma, energy stocks top drag

* NSE index down 0.3 pct, BSE index dips 0.15 pct

* Infosys hits a record high

* Shares of Dr. Reddy’s slump as UK rival Indivior wins injunction

By Krishna V Kurup

July 16 (Reuters) - Indian shares fell on Monday, dented by losses in energy and healthcare stocks, with subdued Asian peers dampening sentiment further, while technology stocks gained with Infosys Ltd hitting an all-time high on upbeat quarterly results.

The broader NSE index was down 0.3 percent at 10,987.15, as of 0710 GMT, while the benchmark BSE index slipped 0.15 percent to 36,485.23.

Asian shares declined after official data showed China’s economy slowed slightly in the second quarter, compounded by fears of a full-scale Sino-U.S. trade war looming over markets.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dropped 0.43 percent.

The market is retracing a little bit after hitting record levels last week, said Gaurang Shah, head investment strategist, Geojit Financial Services.

“There is lot more to be seen,” Shah said, adding, “corporate earnings are looking good, monsoon has panned out well, and India doesn’t have to worry much about trade war jitters as we are a consumption-driven economy.”

Energy shares took a beating after crude prices dropped as concerns around supply disruptions eased, while traders eyed potential supply hikes by Russia and other oil producers.

Reliance Industries Ltd slipped up to 2.4 percent, while Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd declined as much as 2.1 percent.

Shares in ICICI Bank Ltd dropped up to 4.2 percent to their lowest since October 2017, on media reports that the bank has launched an external probe to examine allegations of irregularities in some loan accounts.

Healthcare stocks fell with Nifty Pharma index dropping 2.9 percent.

Dr.Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd plunged as much as 10.8 percent after a U.S. court granted Indivior a preliminary injunction, blocking the Indian company from selling generic versions of the British drugmaker’s bestselling opioid addiction treatment in the United States.

Shares of Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd posted their biggest fall in over a month on report that the Indian competition regulator has penalised the firm, three of its officials and chemists associations about 470 million rupees ($6.86 million) for indulging in unfair business practices.

Meanwhile, Infosys was the top boost on both indexes, gaining as much as 5.1 percent, as brokerages remained upbeat on the growth outlook for India’s second-biggest IT firm, even as it missed market estimate for the June-quarter results. (Reporting by Krishna V Kurup in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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