Mumbai, Sep 20 (IANS) A benchmark index of Indian equities markets Thursday closed 147 points lower amid political uncertainties arising out of the government's decision to hike diesel prices and allow overseas investments in multi-brand retail and on weak global cues.
The 30-scrip sensitive index (Sensex) of the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE), which opened sharply lower at 18,292.22 points, closed at 18,349.25 points, down 0.79 percent or 146.76 points from its previous close at 18,496.01 points.
The wider 50-scrip S&P CNX Nifty of the National Stock Exchange also fell 0.82 percent to 5,554.25 points.
Weak global cues and political uncertainties that arose after the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress decided to pull out of the government have dampened sentiments at the Indian markets.
There was heavy selling pressure in metal, capital goods and power stocks.
The BSE metal index was down 239.16 points, capital goods index fell 203.54 points, power index was down 31.57 points.
The major Sensex losers were BHEL, down 3.62 percent at Rs.216.85; Gail India, down 3.58 percent at Rs.374; Coal India, down 2.99 percent at Rs.364.95; Sterlite Inds, down 2.80 percent at Rs.99.05; and Tata Steel, down 2.73 percent at Rs.393.85.
The major Sensex gainers were Bajaj Auto, up 2.31 percent at Rs.1,788.55; TCS, up 1.62 percent at Rs.1,321.50; ONGC, up 1.21 percent at Rs.284.70; Wipro, up 0.93 percent at Rs.373.05; and ITC, up 0.92 percent at Rs.256.45.
Asian markets closed in red. Japan's Nikkei closed 1.57 percent down, while Shanghai's composite index closed 2.08 percent lower. Hong Kong's Hang Seng closed 1.20 percent down.
At closing bell here, European markets were trading lower. France's CAC was down 0.89 percent and so was Germany's DAX, down 0.58 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 was trading 0.81 percent lower.
-- Indo-Asian News Service