Sensex gains 220 points in opening trade

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Mumbai, Feb 2 (PTI) The Sensex gained nearly 220 pointsin opening trade on the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) today amida firming trend overseas.

The 30-share index of the Bombay Stock Exchange surged by219.18 points, or 1.21 per cent, to 18,241.40 within the firstfew minutes of trade, with oil and gas, realty and bankingstocks leading the pack.

The blue-chip barometer has lost over 1,130 points in thepast five sessions and closed at its lowest level in fivemonths yesterday at 18,022.22.

Similarly, the broad-based National Stock Exchange Niftyindex also moved up by 61.75 points, or nearly 1.1 per cent,to 5,478.95 points today.

Brokers said the investor sentiment was boosted byaggressive buying by funds on the back of overnight gains inthe US market and a firming trend on other Asian bourses.

Shares of Bharti Airtel were trading higher at Rs 324.10despite the company''s announcement of a 41 per cent dip inthird quarter net profit to Rs 1,303.3 crore, compared to Rs2,194.9 crore in the same quarter a year ago.

Meanwhile, Japan''s Nikkei index rose by 0.91 per cent andHong Kong''s Hang Seng Index was up 1.38 per cent in earlytrade today.

In the US, the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 1.25per cent up yesterday.

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