KARACHI: The stock market closed flat on Thursday, after investors pared gains by booking profits at higher levels amid lower participation from stock pundits.
“The positive vibes coming from the Pentagon could not induce a rally, as the market sustained yesterday’s gains and is awaiting official confirmation which is expected soon,” commented JS Global analyst Shakir Padela.
“Hopes for improvement in Pak-US ties after positive talks between army officials supported sentiments,” added Arif Habib Corp Director Ahsan Mehanti. However: “Uncertainty in global stocks and commodities on the prevailing euro-zone debt crises kept foreign interest on the lower end, despite strong earnings outlook in blue chip stocks.”
The Karachi Stock Exchange’s (KSE) benchmark 100-share index rose 0.05% or 6.30 points to end at the 13,805.42 points level. Trade volumes declined to 63 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 94 million shares. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs2.30 billion.
“The market is expected to remain range bound as the financial year end should keep participation low and rates stable,” noted Padela.
Shares of 342 companies were traded on Thursday. At the end of the day 126 stocks closed higher, 113 declined while 103 remained unchanged.
Samar Iqbal, equity dealer at Topline Securities, reported that: “Selected activity was seen in fertiliser, cement and banking stocks in anticipation of better June quarter ending results.”
“Due to a decline in values of index heavyweights, the index ended without any major change, while second-tier banks stocks led the volumes,” noted analyst Hasnain Asghar Ali.
Bankislami Pakistan was the volume leader with 5.68 million shares gaining Rs0.95 to finish at Rs10.30. It was followed by Soneri Bank with 5.16 million shares losing Rs0.07 to close at Rs7.49 and Summit Bank with 5.08 million shares losing Rs0.02 to close at Rs3.20.
“The last session of the current fiscal year – and that of the week – is likely to stay highly volatile: wherein stocks displaying consistency in earnings and payouts are likely to attract liquidity,” commented Ali, while predicting likely trends in the market today (Friday, June 29).
Foreign institutional investors were buyers of Rs98.35 million and sellers of Rs236.62 million, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 29th, 2012.
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