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KSE-100: Covid lockdown fears, roll-over week keeps sentiments in check; index loses 233 points

Stocks continue to lose ground at Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) as rising covid-19 cases in the country have stoked fears of complete lockdown.

On Wednesday, the benchmark KSE-100 opened on a positive note and touched intra-day high at 45,588.94 level, but reversing its trajectory the index also touched intra-day low at 45,020.83 level. However, the index clocked at 45,059.12 level by the closing bell after posting a 233.75 points loss

During the session the investors booked profit owing to the recent surge in the stock price as a result of strong earnings season. Moreover, investors also offloaded equities, earlier bought at attractive rates owing to roll-over week.

The index also lost impetus amid the announcement of ECC deferring the summary till the next meeting on 40% payments to IPPs. Market sentiments were also tested over surge in inflation expectations with the recent price trends, as the headline inflation in April is estimated to clock in at around 11 per cent, up from 8.53pc a year ago and from 9.1pc the previous month. The pick-up in inflation will potentially drive up Interest rates eventually. Nonetheless, Investors continue to struggle due to rising cases as authorities have hinted at Curfew -like lockdown in major cities.

During the session Market Capital decreased by Rs.27.84 billion, while total value traded also decreased by 1.17 billion to Rs.16.16 billion.

The volume at KSE-100 receded from 172 million shares recorded in the previous session to 140 million shares, whereas the all-share volume also reduced from 366 million shares from the previous session to 305.7 million shares.

The volume chart was led by Telecard Limited followed by Azgard Nine Limited and TRG Pakistan. The scrips exchanged 29.3 million, 25.6 million and 18.34 million shares, respectively. According to the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited (NCCPL) foreign investors were net sellers of $1.56 million worth of equities. Among local investors, Mutual Funds and Companies led the selling chart, which offloaded $2.07 million, and $1.6 million worth of equities.

However, Other Organizations Individuals led the buying chart and mopped up over $3.65 million and $2.1 million worth of equities each.

During the session, sectors which dented the index were Commercial Banks with 93 points, Oil & Gas Exploration Companies with 44 points, Technology & Communication with 35 points, Cement with 33 points and Pharmaceuticals with 29 points. Among the scrips, the most points taken off the index was by Habib Bank Limited which stripped the index of 39 points followed by Oil & Gas Development Company with 36 points, Pakistan Petroleum Limited with 24 points, Muslim Commercial Bank with 23 points and TRG Pakistan with 21 points.

However, the sectors which lifted the index were Fertilizer with 30 points, Chemical with 17 points, Refinery with 15 points, Textile Composite with 13 points and Transport with 3 points. Among the scrips, the most points added to the index was by Colgate Pakistan which contributed 24 points followed by Fauji Fertilizer Company Limited with 21 points, National Refinery Limited with 13 points, ENGRO with 13 points and Pakistan Oilfields Limited with 12 points.

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