India Inc confronts slowdown from once-heady growth

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(Reuters) - India Inc has lost its swagger. Slowing growth, stubbornly high inflation, rising interest rates, political gridlock, gloom in the West and a sliding rupee have conspired to dampen investor and corporate sentiment in Asia's third-largest economy.

Share prices are down 20 percent for the year, bad loans are on the rise, and companies are delaying big investments that would add much-needed industrial and infrastructure capacity.

Leaders of some of India's largest companies will discuss the outlook for getting the economy back on track and restoring business confidence at the sixth Reuters India Investment Summit from Nov. 21 to Nov. 23 in a series of exclusive interviews.

"This slowdown is certainly more than a temporary blip, given that there are very serious concerns on the domestic front, notwithstanding global problems," said Bidisha Ganguly, chief economist at the Confederation of Indian Industry.

"The biggest worry is certainly the slowing of investment and capital expenditure by the major corporates."

India is still likely to grow at around 7.6 percent in the current fiscal year compared with 8.5 percent a year earlier, according to a Reuters poll, and its young, aspirational and growing population of 1.2 billion give investors and companies optimism for the long term.