The market turned choppy soon after opening in the positive terrain. Even as information technology and healthcare stocks chalked up significant gains, fears of inflation taking a toll on consumer spending hammered realty and auto stocks.
ONGC extended gains providing the much needed support for the key indices after the government hiked the prices of petrol, diesel and LPG, while simultaneously reducing the customs and excise duties. This would put a cap on the subsidy burden that upstream oil companies have to share, which remained uncertain until now. The upstream oil companies (ONGC, OIL and GAIL) will now have to bear Rs 45,000 crore in subsidy burden.
At 11:45 am, Bombay Stock Exchange's Sensex was at 15,586.14, up 0.46 per cent or 71 points. The index swung between a range of 15,445.22 and 15,625.38 in trade so far.
National Stock Exchange's Nifty was up 0.69 per cent or 32 points at 4617.25, after falling to a low of 4572.55 from a high of 4629.40.
Investors stayed away from smallcaps and midcaps given the volatile swings in the market. BSE Midcap and Smallcap indices were down 0.59 per cent and 0.19 per cent respectively.
Biggest Sensex gainers were ONGC (up 6.17%), Satyam Computer (3.96%), Infosys Technologies (3.07%), Ranbaxy Laboratories (2.33%) and Hindustan Unilever (2.17%).