KARACHI: Stocks ended marginally higher on Wednesday after trading lower most of the day, as local institutions stepped in to accumulate at attractive prices in the final hour, dealers said.
The Karachi Stock Exchange’s benchmark 100- share index ended 0.13 per cent, or 13.21 points, up at 10,222.04 points after trading as low as 10,0079.65 points during the day. “Market sentiment was affected by the higher-thanexpected inflation figures but the fall provided an opportunity to institutions to accumulate at lower levels and the index ended higher,” said Sajid Bhanji, director at Arif Habib Ltd.
Pakistan’s Consumer Price Index (CPI), a key indicator of inflation, rose 13.26 per cent in April from a year ago, according to official data released on Wednesday. A Reuters poll of 12 analysts and economists, conducted last week, had forecast April’s CPI to increase by 12.6 per cent year-on-year. Dealers said market sentiment could get a boost from the expected approval by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) of a loan tranche on Friday.
Wednesday’s trade volume rose 25.7 per cent to 139.5 million shares from Tuesday’s tally of 111 million shares. Second-tier stocks were the volume leaders during the day while some activity in the oil, cement, fertiliser and banking sectors was also witnessed. Total exchange value stood at a disappointing Rs3.57 billion, although it was 46 per cent higher than Tuesday’s figure.
During the day’s trade, 167 stocks closed higher, 232 declined and 17 remained unchanged in value. TRG Pakistan (KSE: TRG) was the volume leader with 24.94 million shares gaining Rs0.99 to close at Rs5.36. Lotte Pakistan (KSE: LOTPTA) came second with 17.41 million shares gaining Rs0.48 to close at Rs11.05.
Worldcall Telecom (KSE: WTL) finished third with 16.74 million shares gaining Rs0.14 to close at Rs3.99. Engro Corporation (KSE: ENGRO) remained under pressure throughout the day due to foreign selling rumours and touched Rs190 at one point, eventually closing 0.34 per cent lower at Rs194.64. Indus Motor (KSE: INDU) shares went up 4.02 per cent, as the company recorded its highest ever monthly sales of 5,205 units in April. TRG Pakistan, Wednesday’s volume leader, was also the KSE-100 top gainer of the day, its share price rising a massive 20.82 per cent.
Unilever Pakistan Foods (KSE: UPFL) was in the losers list dropping 4.94 per cent to Rs1,058. Pakistan Telephone Cables (KSE: PTEC) closed in the red, its share price shedding 3.13 per cent to close at Rs3.1.
Published in the Express Tribune, May 13th, 2010.