Bullish investors ploughed through the 17,000 points psychological barrier on the last day of a shortened trading week, as speculations for a positive outlook on the upcoming earnings announcements fueled euphoria in the market.
The Karachi Stock Exchange’s (KSE) benchmark 100-share index rose 0.87% or 147.69 points to end at the 17,056.36 points level. Trade volumes surged to 271 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 218 million shares. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs6.91 billion.
“Stocks closed at a record high, amid rising trades in the earnings announcements session at the KSE after the State Bank slashed yields on treasury bills,” said Ahsan Mehanti, analyst at Arif Habib Corp.
“Institutional buying and good corporate results helped equity prices improve by nearly 1%,” commented Topline Securities’ equity dealer Samar Iqbal. “Better-than-expected earnings announcement by Engro Foods helped the market sentiment. Mid-cap cement stocks performed well, as investors are expecting healthy profits for the December quarter.”
“Institutions were reported buyers, seen cherry picking value and payout plays, while day traders were active in small and mid caps, mainly cements that are generating exceptional interest,” echoed Faisal Bilwani from Elixir Securities.
“Maple Leaf Cement hit its upper circuit at Rs17.86 on the back of expectations of a strong financial result … Accumulation was also observed by investors in exploration and production, banking and fertiliser sectors,” reported JS Global analyst Fahad Ali. “We saw encouraging volumes in the telecommunication sector, specifically in Pakistan Telecommunication Company, as its result announcement is nearing and traders and investors are expecting the company to post relatively better earnings this quarter.”
Fauji Cement was the volume leader with 60.33 million shares, gaining Rs0.32 to finish at Rs7.80. It was followed by Maple Leaf Cement with 22.63 million shares, gaining Rs1.00 to close at Rs17.86 and Byco Petroleum with 20.02 million shares, gaining Rs0.45 to close at Rs14.37.
Foreign institutional investors were buyers of Rs417.59 million and sellers of Rs491.94 million.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 25th, 2013.