KARACHI: The KSE-100 Index underwent a volatile ride on Tuesday, hitting an intra-day low of 44,465.31 before institutional buying helped stocks recover to close almost flat.
The benchmark-100 started off in the red with investors resorting to profit-taking. The index plunged 432 points in intra-day trading before value-buying and upcoming results announcements provided the positive triggers. However, there was a clear resistance near the 45,000 level.
At close, the KSE-100 Index ended with an increase of 9.51 points or 0.02% to finish at 44,907.20 points.
Elixir Securities' analyst Muhammad Arbash said equities closed little changed after witnessing volatile trading where the benchmark index swung in a 500-point range.
"Market opened on a lacklustre note and as the day progressed profit-taking was seen in specific sectors namely financials, steels and autos. Institutional interest reportedly from foreigners remained higher in cements," Arbash commented.
"Oils also remained in the limelight with Oil & Gas Development Company (OGDC PA +1.3%) announcing hydrocarbon discovery that according to our analyst will have a positive EPS impact of Rs0.2/share.
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"On the results front, earnings announced by National Refinery (NRL PA -0.1%), Attock Refinery (ATRL PA +0.85), Honda Car (HCAR PA -4.95%) and Attock Cement (ACPL PA -2.7%) came lower than street consensus. However, International Steels (ISL PA +2.2%) announced a surprise cash payout of Rs1.5/share along with inline earnings, cheering investors."
The company's management, soon after market close, also notified the exchange of an expansion with Rs290 million announced for an additional brownfield line of 100,000TPA cold rolled capacity while Rs675 million allocated for service centres in Karachi and Lahore.
"[We] see consolidation in near-term as investors' focus now shift to stocks earnings. We recommend booking profits on strength and accumulate value plays on dips," the analyst added.
JS Global analyst Maaz Mulla said the KSE-100 index witnessed a bearish market on Tuesday.
"Selling pressure in the market was likely due to futures rollover week and investors opting to book profits," Mulla ovserved.
Refinery sector announced its results for 1HFY18, where NRL posted an EPS of Rs20.30 and ATRL declared an EPS of Rs16.14. Mixed sentiments were seen in aforementioned sector as PRL (+4.98%) and ATRL (+0.85%) closed in the green, while on the other side NRL (-0.10%) closed in the red.
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Mixed sentiments were also seen in the steel sector as ASTL (-1.47%) closed in the red, while on the other hand ASL (+0.05%) and ISL (+2.15%) closed in the green zone. ISL announced its 1HFY18 results where the company posted EPS of Rs5.02 and cash payout of Rs1.50 per share.
OGDC (+1.31%) from the E&P sector gained to close positive on the back of material information released by the company discovering gas and condensate from its exploratory well Dhok Hussain well 01, located in district Kohat.
"Moving forward we expect market to continue its positive trend and recommend investors to accumulate growth and valued stocks on dips," he added.
Overall, trading volume decreased to 226 million shares, compared with Monday's tally of 294 million.
Shares of 379 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 188 stocks closed higher, 172 declined while 19 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs13.3 billion.
Sui South Gas was the volume leader with 13.6 million shares, gaining Rs0.61 to close at Rs36.01. It was followed by Dewan Cement with 12.9 million shares, gaining Rs1.14 to close at Rs23.99 and Pak Elektron with 12.4 million shares, gaining Rs1.35 to close at Rs61.85.
Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of Rs1.21 billion during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.
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