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Sensex slips 1.6 pct, industrial output data disappoints

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The BSE Sensex fell for the second consecutive day and ended 1.59 percent down on Thursday as an unexpected fall in industrial output data for December added to concerns over a deteriorating global economic outlook.

Index heavyweights like Reliance Industries (down 2.3 percent), Infosys (down 3.3 percent) and Bharti Airtel (down 3.5 percent) contributed to the fall.

Industrial output data fell 2 percent in December from a year earlier, the second fall in three months — further evidence of falling demand at home and abroad. In this scenario, more rate cuts by the RBI cannot be ruled out.

There was some respite as inflation fell to 4.39 percent at the end of January; the lowest in just over a year. Economists expect inflation to continue to fall for some time.

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