Mumbai: The Bombay Stock Exchange benchmark Sensex rallied by nearly 160 points in opening trade on Friday on better-than expected quarterly earnings by Hero Honda and other companies, besides a firming trend on other Asian bourses.

The 30-share BSE index, which has lost over 217 points in the previous two sessions, recovered by 159.80 points, or 0.87 per cent, to 18,595.99 in opening trade today, with several blue-chips leading the recovery.

In a similar fashion, the wide-based National Stock Exchange Nifty index edged up by 40.70 points, or 0.73 per cent, to 5,582.30.

Brokers attributed the early recovery in stocks to fresh buying by funds and retail investors, driven by a firming trend on other Asian bourses, in line with overnight gains in the US market after a new European Union-IMF bailout deal for debt-ridden Greece was announced.

In addition, better-than-expected quarterly earnings by Hero Honda and other companies buoyed the trading sentiment, they said.

Meanwhile, in the Asian region, Japan's Nikkei Index was trading 0.86 per cent higher, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index rose by 1.25 per cent in early trade today. The US Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 1.21 per cent higher in Thursday's trade.

(Agencies)