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Markets down for third straight day
Thu, 12 Dec Closing

Indian equity markets started the day on a negative note and continued this trend throughout the day. Markets closed at day's low ahead of key Indian economic data set to be released later in the day. Sentiment was also hit on account of a provisional budget deal out of Washington which removed one of the near-term reasons for the Fed to keep up its current pace of quantitative easing. Banking and Capital Goods stocks were the leading pack of losers. While the BSE-Sensex closed lower by 245 points, the NSE-Nifty closed lower by 71 points. Both the BSE Mid Cap and the BSE Small Cap closed on a negative note.

As regards global markets, Asian indices closed weak. European indices have also opened in the red. The rupee was trading at Rs 61.6 to the dollar at the time of writing.

Sun Pharma, Aurobindo Pharma, Lupin Ltd, Torrent Pharma and Dr Reddy's have been given the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for selling a copycat version of antidepressant Cymbalta, one of the most widely prescribed treatments for depression, anxiety and other disorders in the US market. Cymbalta is the fifth largest selling drug in the world. It is Eli Lilly's best-selling drug with annual sales of US$ 4.7 bn. The drug's patent expired on Wednesday, causing the entry of cheaper generic versions in the US market. Apart from Indian companies, Israel-based Teva Pharmaceuticals has also received the FDA nod. Given that many players will be vying for a share of this blockbuster drug, there is expected to be considerable price erosion.

Britannia Industries is planning to build a factory in Tamil Nadu, its second in the south Indian state. The company is investing Rs 1 bn for setting up the new plant and has secured land for the project. The work on the Tamil Nadu plant will start next year and it will be as large as the company's biggest facility in Uttarakhand. While 60% of the company's production is outsourced, Britannia plans to bring that number down to half and it will continue to build new plants as and when required. The company has recently set up facilities in Odisha and Bihar to strengthen its position in eastern India. It also opened a factory in Gujarat last month.

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