Sensex zooms over 340 points in early trade; financial stocks lead rally

Mumbai: The BSE benchmark Sensex surged 346.55 points in the opening session on Monday, propelled by a rally in financial stocks.

The 30-share index was trading 346.55 points or 0.71 per cent higher at 49,225.09 in opening trade. Likewise, the NSE barometer Nifty rose 88.40 points or 0.62 per cent to 14,460.30 in early deals.

On the Sensex chart, UltraTech Cement, Bajaj Finance, HDFC, Axis Bank, Bajaj FinServ, HDFC Bank and Mahindra and Mahindra were the prominent gainers. On the other hand, RIL, PowerGrid, Asian Paints, ONGC and ITC were among the major laggards.

On Friday, the BSE Sensex had tumbled 746.22 points or 1.50 per cent to finish at 48,878.54, posting its largest single-session drop in a month; while, the NSE Nifty had slumped 218.45 points or 1.5 per cent to 14,371.90. However, a day before the Sensex had breached the historic 50,000-level for the first time ever.

Foreign institutional investors offloaded Indian equities worth Rs 635.69 crore on a net basis on Friday. Analysts are of the view that markets may remain volatile in this holiday-shortened week amid monthly derivatives expiry, quarterly earnings and the upcoming Union Budget.

Indian equity markets would remain closed on Tuesday for the Republic Day holiday. Asian shares were trading higher in afternoon trade on Monday. Meanwhile, Brent crude, the global oil benchmark, was trading 0.16 per cent higher at USD 55.30 per barrel on Monday.

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