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Indian Shares Suffer Biggest Weekly Drop in Two Years

BENGALURU, June 17 (Reuters) - Indian shares ended lower on Friday to post their biggest weekly decline in more than two years, drubbed by worries that rapid increases in interest rates to tame stubborn inflation could derail economic growth.

The NSE Nifty 50 index fell 0.44% to 15,293.5, while the S&P BSE Sensex fell 0.26% to 51,360.42. Both the indexes touched more than one-year lows in their sixth straight session of losses.

The blue-chip indexes logged losses of around 5.5% each for a week that saw the U.S. Federal Reserve hike interest rates by 75 basis points and the Swiss National Bank deliver its first rate hike in 15 years.

Analysts have said selling by foreign investors and fears of damage to economic recovery from aggressive monetary policy tightening were causing jitters in the market.

Foreign investors have withdrawn a net $3.64 billion from Indian equities this month after selling a net $5.18 billion in May.

"The rising cost of capital will impact valuation multiples and have an adverse impact on economic growth and corporate earnings," said Gaurav Dua, head of capital market strategy at Sharekhan.

The Nifty IT index and the Nifty Pharma index, which track some companies that are exposed to the U.S. market, were among the worst performing sub-indexes on Friday, falling 1.5% and 2.2%, respectively. The Nifty IT index posted a weekly drop of around 8%.

Shares of India's largest company, Reliance Industries, ended 1.2% higher after business channel ET Now reported that the company was considering buying out bankrupt cosmetics giant Revlon Inc in the United States.

Titan Company was the biggest percentage loser on the Nifty, slumping 6% in its worst day in more than two years.

Shares of sugar manufacturers fell between 1% and 6% after Reuters reported India was likely to impose a ceiling on sugar exports from October to ensure ample domestic supplies and keep a lid on local prices.

Reporting by Chris Thomas in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni

Source: Reuters

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