Negative cues on the back of global protectionist measures, higher interest rates in the US and hike in crude oil prices, along with selling pressure in banking, auto and capital goods stocks depressed the key Indian equity indices on Thursday.According to market observers, the BSE Sensex and NSE Nifty50 -- which had opened on a higher note after the US Federal Reserve gave a dovish outlook on its rate hike trajectory in 2018 -- trimmed their initial gains as investors booked profits.On a closing basis, The wider Nifty50 of the National Stock Exchange (NSE) fell by 40.50 points or 0.40 per cent to 10,114.75 points.The barometer 30-scrip Sensitive Index (Sensex) of the BSE closed at 33,006.27 points -- down 129.91 points or 0.39 per cent from the previous session's close.The BSE market breadth was bearish with 2,059 declines and 670 advances."Markets ended lower on Thursday after two sessions of gains. A sharp rise in crude oil prices yesterday, March 21, seemed to have dented investors' sentiments," Deepak Jasani, Head - Retail Research, HDFC Securities, told IANS."Major Asian markets have closed on a mixed note. European indices like FTSE 100, DAX and CAC 40 traded in the red," he added.In terms of the broader markets, the S&P BSE mid cap index fell by 0.75 per cent and the small cap index by 1.05 per cent.
Vinod Nair, Head of Research at Geojit Financial Services, said: "Market started on a positive note on account of less hawkish US Fed commentary on CY18 (calendar year 2018)rate hike trajectory and in turn US10 year yield declined.""However, the gains were only short lived due to negative trend in European and other Asian market owing to re-emergence of trade war. Investors are utilising every rally as an opportunity to sell and market has come back to the 200 DMA due to concern on domestic credit growth and liquidity crunch," said Nair.On the currency front, the Indian rupee strengthened by 10 paise at 65.11 against the US dollar from its previous close at 65.21.In terms of investments, provisional data with the exchanges showed that foreign institutional investors purchased scrips worth Rs 161.11 crore and domestic institutional investors worth Rs 409.89 crore.Sector-wise, the S&P BSE auto index declined by 225.95 points, followed by capital goods index by 198.79 points and banking index by 180.11 points.On the other hand, the S&P BSE consumer durables index edged higher by 169.67 points, metal index by 49.39 points, and energy index by 12.32 points.Major Sensex gainers on Thursday were: ONGC, up 2.45 per cent at Rs 179.75; IndusInd Bank, up 1.41 per cent at Rs 1,756; Tata Motors, up 1.29 per cent at Rs 338.20; Reliance Industries, up 1.22 per cent at Rs 907.30; and Tata Motors (DVR), up 1.03 per cent at Rs 190.65.The Sensex losers were: State Bank of India, down 2.46 per cent at Rs 241.60; Wipro, down 2.32 per cent at Rs 288.70; Mahindra & Mahindra, down 2.14 per cent at Rs 729.80; ICICI Bank, down 2.09 per cent at Rs 283.55; and Maruti Suzuki, down 2.01 per cent at Rs 8,699.