Mumbai, Jun 17: Extending losses for the third straight session, the benchmark BSE Sensex fell over 51 points in early trade today on sustained selling by funds, tracking mixed Asian cues and weakening rupee amidst tension in Iraq that led to rise in global crude prices.

The 30-share index, which had lost 385.73 points in the previous two sessions, fell by another 51.25 points, or 0.20 per cent, to 25,139.23 in early trade with FMCG, realty, power, banking, oil and gas, capital goods and PSU sector stocks leading the fall.

The broader Nifty of the National Stock Exchange too moved down by 4.95 points, or 0.07 per cent, to 7,528.60. Brokers said the sentiment was mostly affected by rising global crude prices on escalating tension in Iraq and concerns about inflation which surged to five-month highs in May.

Rising prices of essential food items like vegetables, fruits and cereals, pushed up inflation to five-month high of 6.01 per cent in May. Continued selling by foreign funds and retail investors largely after the rupee weakened to a fresh six-week low of Rs 60.50 also dampened the trading sentiments here.

In other Asian markets, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell by 0.27 per cent, while Japan’s Nikkei moved up by 0.50 per cent in early trade today. The US Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.03 per cent higher in yesterday’s trade.