The BSE Sensex fell 150 points to close at 33,685 on Thursday, amid a selloff witnessed in oil & gas stocks. The National Stock Exchange (NSE) benchmark index Nifty settled at 10,360, 50 points lower than its previous close of 10,410. Among energy stocks, Indian Oil and Reliance Industries declined, ending Thursday's session nearly 3 per cent and 2 per cent lower, respectively. Besides Indian Oil, top laggards on the Nifty 50 included GAIL India, ICICI Bank, Bosch and Tata Steel, closing up to 1.7 per cent lower. Shares in the other Asian markets slipped broadly amid mounting investor concerns that growing trade tensions would hurt the global economy. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dropped 0.45 per cent.
In the 50-scrip index Nifty, 35 stocks finished the day in the negative zone.
Among other oil & gas shares, Oil India, GAIL India and Bharat Petroleum also fell up to 1.6 per cent.
Global crude oil prices held steady on Thursday. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures rose 17 cents, or 0.3 per cent, to $61.13 a barrel while Brent crude futures were at $65 per barrel, up 11 cents, or 0.2 per cent.
Crude oil prices were receiving support from healthy demand. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) said on Wednesday that oil consumption was expected to grow by 1.62 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2018.
Wipro shares fell 3 per cent to hit an intraday high of Rs 302. Shares, however, finished the day mildly lower at Rs 293.25. On Wednesday, Bengaluru-based Wipro said it had signed a definitive agreement to divest its hosted data centre services business to Ensono for $405 million. Ensono is a hybrid IT services provider based in Illinois, US. The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the quarter ending June 2018, Wipro said.
State-run banks and FMCG stocks also sagged. SBI fell over 1 per cent, PNB 0.7 per cent while Bank of Baroda ended 1.3 per cent lower. Private banks ICICI Bank, Yes Bank and Axis Bank finished Thursday's session around 1-2 per cent lower.
Fertiliser stocks, and other agricultural stocks, rose significantly, a day after the government decided to continue a urea subsidy scheme till 2020 and implemented the direct benefit transfer (DBT) scheme.
National Fertilizers, Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilizers, and Madras Fertilizers rose 4-6 per cent.