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Sensex gains by 88 points

Mumbai: The Sensex gained over 88 points in opening trade on the Bombay Stock Exchange today, led by encouraging third quarter earnings posted by State Bank of India amid a firming trend on other Asian bourses.

The Sensex, which had lost 39.01 points in the previous session on Friday, rose by 88.16 points to 19,095.69 today, with banking, realty and consumer durables stocks attracting the most interest.

Similarly, the broad-based National Stock Exchange Nifty index moved up by 28 points to 5,724.5 points in the first few minutes of trade.

Funds and retail investors indulged in selective buying after the country`s largest lender, State Bank of India, reported a 13.45 per cent rise in consolidated net profit to Rs 3,806.49 crore for the third quarter ended December 31, marketmen said.

Stocks of State Bank of India were trading 2.77 per cent higher at Rs 2,670 in opening trade.

However, despite the Sensex bouncing back from its weak close last week, fears of a rate hike at the Reserve Bank of India`s monetary policy review tomorrow cast a shadow over the trading sentiment, limiting the gains, they said.

A firming trend on other Asian bourses in early trade today also influenced the trading sentiment, market analysts added.

In the Asian region, Hong Kong`s Hang Seng was up 0.05 per cent, while Japan`s Nikkei was up 0.43 per cent in early trade today.

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