Live: Sensex Firm; L&T, Infosys Lead Gains

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1:07 p.m.: The stock markets continue to trade on a strong note. The Sensex advanced 307 points to 24,550 and Nifty rose 88 points to 7,457.  12:54 p.m.: Vedanta was the top Nifty gainer, up 6.46 per cent at Rs. 83.20. Tata Steel, Hindalco, Tata Motors, BHEL, Larsen & Toubro, Cairn India, Dr Reddy’s Labs, Adani Ports and TCS were also among the gainers, up 2.2-6 per cent each.  12:25 p.m.: In a boost to firms like ONGC and Reliance Industries, the government plans to raise natural gas price by about 60 per cent for their undeveloped gas discoveries in difficult areas. ONGC and Reliance Industries shares gain over 0.5 per cent each.  11:56 a.m.: Infosys, Larsen & Toubro, Tata Motors, HDFC, TCS, HDFC Bank and Dr Reddy’s Labs were among the top Sensex movers.  11:40 a.m.: Select banking share were witnessing profit booking after yesterday’s sharp upmove. The BSE Bankex was down 0.32 per cent; ICICI Bank, Yes Bank, Punjab National Bank, Bank of Baroda, Federal Bank and State Bak of India were among the losers, down 0.6-1.6 per cent each.  11:30 a.m.: Metal shares were witnessing buying interest as the prices of iron ore fines rose in international markets. The BSE metal index was up 2.5 per cent; Jindal Steel was the top gainer from this space, up 7 per cent to Rs. 61.35. Tata Steel, Hindalco, Vedanta, NMDC, SAIL and JSW Steel were also up 2-4.5 per cent each.  11:16 a.m.: Capital goods stocks were witnessing buying interest. The BSE capital goods index was up 2.76 per cent; Mahindra CIE was the top gainer from this space, up 6 per cent at Rs. 177. BHEL, Kalpatru Power, Larsen & Toubro, Alstom T&D, Suzlon, BEML, Welspun Corp and Thermax were also among the gainers, up 1.4-5.7 per cent each.  10:59 a.m.: Prakash Steelage was the top gainer from the small-cap space, up 19 per cent at Rs. 9.40. Sandur Manganese & Iron Ores, Surana Solar, KPIT, Jubilant FoodWorks, Tata Sponge and Geometric were also among the gainers, up 6.45-10 per cent each.  10:41 a.m.: The stock markets are trading firmly higher. The Sensex advances 253 points to 24,495 and Nifty rises 71 points to 7,440.  10:11 a.m.: Maruti Suzuki India Ltd, India’s top-selling carmaker, will raise the prices of its passenger vehicles by up to Rs. 34,494, after the government imposed a new ‘green’ tax on all cars sold in the country. Shares of Maruti Suzuki traded 0.66 per cent lower at Rs. 3,588.  10:04 a.m.: The stock markets came a bit off the intraday highs. The Sensex was up 195 points at 24,438 and Nifty was at 7,423, up 55 points.  9:55 a.m.: Current rise in stock markets is a sharp bear market rally, says technical analyst Sushil Kedia.  9:50 a.m.: From perspective of 8-10 days, Nifty is likely to trade in a range of 7,130-7,530, says technical analyst Sushil Kedia.  9:42 a.m.: The market breadth is positive as 1,076 stocks advance while 467 decline.  9:37 a.m.: Broader markets were trading on a mixed note. The BSE mid-cap index was up 0.17 per cent and the small-cap index was up 0.74 per cent. From the mid-cap space, Wockhardt was the top gainer, up 4 per cent at Rs. 918. Alstom T&D, Oberoi Realty, Bharat Forge, Kansai Nerolac, Jindal Steel, Reliance Infra and Glenmark were also among the gainers, up 1.5-3 per cent each.  9:30 a.m.: Sensex rose over 250 points and Nifty moved above its crucial psychological level of 7,400 on the back of buying in IT, metal, auto, healthcare and FMCG shares amid firm global cues.  From the Nifty-50 basket of stocks, 43 stocks were advancing while 7 were declining.  Dr Reddy’s Labs was the top Nifty gainer, the stock advanced 2.8 per cent to Rs. 3,100. Tata Steel,Asian Paints, Infosys, Tata Motors, Mahindra & Mahindra, HDFC, ITC and Bajaj Auto were also among the gainers, up 1.7-2.6 per cent each.  On the other hand, ICICI Bank, Bank of Baroda, Punjab National Bank and TCS were among the notable losers.  8:10 a.m.: The Sensex and Nifty are likely to open on a positive note in trades on Thursday tracking positive trading of Nifty futures on the Singapore Stock Exchange amid firm global cues.  The Nifty futures traded on Singapore Exchange also known as the SGX Nifty was up 0.72 per cent or 53 points at 7,414.  Meanwhile, Asian shares were trying to string together three sessions of gains on Thursday as upbeat data on US jobs and gains for a range of commodities whetted risk appetites globally.  Most of the other Asian markets were also trading on a positive note. China’s Shanghai advanced 0.4 per cent and Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.6 per cent. On the other hand, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng slipped 0.3 per cent.  Overnight, energy and bank stocks led Wall Street higher on Wednesday, adding to a rally in the previous session, after strong jobs data dispelled concerns over the health of the US economy.  The Dow Jones industrial average rose 34.24 points, or 0.2 per cent, to 16,899.32, the S&P 500 gained 8.1 points, or 0.41 per cent, to 1,986.45 and the Nasdaq Composite added 13.83 points, or 0.29 per cent, to 4,703.42.  Back home, foreign institutional investors bought shares worth Rs. 1,437 crore while the domestic institutional investors sold shares worth Rs. 593.67 crore on Wednesday.