KARACHI: The KSE-100 Index continued its downward ride for a third straight session, finishing below the 51,000-point level as profit-taking continued to take the shine off recent gains.
After a brief positive open, the KSE-100 succumbed to profit-taking and then underwent a steep fall as the International Court of Justice ordered a stay on the execution of Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav until it makes a final judgement in the case.
By close on Thursday, the Pakistan Stock Exchange’s (PSX) benchmark KSE 100-share Index finished with a fall of 554.81 points or 1.08% to end at 50,956.60.
Elixir Securities stated Pakistan equities succumbed to profit-taking for the third consecutive session, albeit on dismal volumes.
“Market traded with a bearish bias throughout as profit-taking in major sectors notably financials, power, cements and oils kept Index deep in the red,” said analyst Ali Raza.
“Seven stocks that contributed nearly 70% to the decline were United Bank (UBL PA -3.1%), Hub Power (HUBC PA -3.7%), MCB Bank (MCB PA -2.2%), Engro Corp (ENGRO PA -2.1%), Pakistan Petroleum (PPL PA -2.5%), Habib Bank (HBL PA -1.01%) and Lucky Cements (LUCK PA -1.6%),” said the analyst.
“Mainboards witnessed a significant drop in volumes as evident by only 69 million shares exchanging hands on the KSE-100 Index. However, third-tier names continued to lead the day’s volumes on retail churning.
“Despite continued profit-taking in the recent three sessions, we don’t see any measure downside ahead and market is likely to consolidate around current levels for the time being before it resumes its advance to previous record high,” Raza added.
JS Global analyst Arhum Ghous said the market opened on a positive note where the index made an intraday high of +59 points. This positivity was short lived.
“The index made an intraday low of -636 points, while it closed around the 50,956 level (down 555 points),” he said.
“Banking sector led the decline in the market as index heavy-weights MCB, UBL and HBL (-1.01%) cumulatively contributed -159 points to the index. E&P sector closed (-1.34%) down from its previous day close as oil prices edged lower on the back of market weighing rising US shale production against ongoing efforts by major producers to cut output to reduce a global glut,” Ghous remarked.
“Moving forward, we expect overall volatility to persist in the market and recommend investors to accumulate MSCI EM stocks on dips,” he added.
Overall, trading volumes dropped to 302 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 371 million.
Shares of 410 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 182 stocks closed higher and 210 declined while 18 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs12.1 billion.
WorldCall Telecom was the volume leader with 32.5 million shares, gaining Rs0.18 to close at Rs3.38. It was followed by Engro Polymer with 15.1 million shares, gaining Rs0.29 to close at Rs31.10 and Silk Bank with 14.2 million shares, gaining Rs0.12 to close at Rs1.87.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs722 million during the trading session, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.