Market watch: Stock market dips on low oil prices, auto policy

Benchmark KSE-100 index falls 57.53 points

Our Correspondent March 21, 2016
Benchmark KSE-100 index falls 57.53 points.

KARACHI: A dull day was witnessed on the bourse on Monday with an unexpectedly low turnout, along with depressed crude oil prices. Automobile policy did not help as a big chunk of government’s new policy favoured new entrants.

The Pakistan Stock Exchange’s benchmark KSE-100 index fell 0.17% or 57.53 points to end at 33,022.87.

According to Elixir Securities analyst Ali Raza, equities closed little changed after trading range bound as interest remained selective.

“Stocks opened sideways following lower regional markets, while index-heavy exploration and production stocks opened gap down and traded lower following the dip in global crude.

“Mari Petroleum (+2.6%), however, gained on news of the company’s plan to increase hydrocarbon output by 200 mmcfd and being eligible for higher prices on incremental production.”

On the other hand, Hub Power (+0.03%) closed flat after notifying the stock exchange regarding reduction in its stake in China Power Hub Generation Company, which would dilute the value accretion from the coal project.

“Steel stocks came in the limelight after government imposed additional duties on the import of finished steel products while automobile plays namely Pak Suzuki Motor (-1.95%) and Indus Motor (-0.34%) closed negative as the new auto policy was largely aimed at attracting investment from the new entrants.

“Overall, it was a dull day at the PSX as turnover on the KSE-100 index hit the lowest mark since January 11.”

The analyst expected range-bound trading to continue in the near term with participants looking for flows to guide the market direction.

Meanwhile, JS Global analyst Ahmed Saeed Khan said global crude oil prices continued their negative trajectory to trade below the psychological barrier of $40 per barrel for West Texas Intermediate, causing pressure in the oil sector as all major players such as PSO, Pakistan Petroleum and Pakistan Oilfields closed in the red zone.

“On the other hand, Mari (+2.90%) rallied on the back of news that the company plans to increase production by 200 mmcfd.

“Rally was also witnessed in the fertiliser sector on news that the Punjab CM has announced a Rs100-billion plan for the development of agriculture and allied sectors similar to the federal government’s announcement of an incentive package for farmers.

“Star performer of the aforementioned sectors were Engro Fertilizer (+0.76%) and Fauji Fertilizer Bin Qasim (+1.18%).

Trade volumes fell to 123 million shares compared with Friday’s tally of 173 million shares.

Shares of 336 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 156 stocks closed higher, 150 declined while 30 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs5.2 billion.

Dewan Motors was the volume leader with 12.3 million shares gaining Rs0.60 to finish at Rs9.77. It was followed by The Bank of Punjab with 6.9 million shares gaining Rs0.12 to close at Rs9.13 and K-Electric with 6.9 million shares losing Rs0.09 to close at Rs7.01.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs332 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 22nd, 2016.

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