Market watch: KSE-100 gains 230 points, ends positive for fourth successive session

Benchmark index increases 0.53% to close at 43,740.49

Our Correspondent March 02, 2018
Benchmark index increases 0.53% to close at 43,740.49. PHOTO: FILE

KARACHI: Stocks finished the week on a high with the KSE-100 Index registering a positive finish for the fourth successive time despite choppy trading during the session on Friday.

US President Donald Trump's move towards imposing tariffs on steel and aluminium imports created negative sentiment at the start of the session, pulling the sector in the red as trading began.

However, index heavyweights cement along with oil and gas exploration and production stocks kept the momentum going, allowing the index to close in the green.

At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded an increase of 230.10 points or 0.53% to settle at 43,740.49.

Market watch: Cement sector shines as KSE-100 rises 271 points

In its post-session comments, Al Habib Capital Markets said the market remained choppy.

"In the initial 35 minutes of market open, the KSE-100 Index lost 97.44 points on the back of news that US President Donald Trump has decided to impose duties on steel and aluminium, which could have negative repercussions on Pakistan's steel sector.

"In addition, news that Pakistan's energy sector's circular debt has scaled to Rs922 billion with payable to PSO scaling to Rs89.4 billion kept the oil marketing giant's stock in red.

"However, Thursday's news that cement prices have risen by Rs10/bag in the 'north' coupled with expectations of a further increase in cement prices kept the sector in green. Further, cherry picking in Oil and Gas Development Corporation kept the E&P stock in green.

Market watch: Oil and cement garner attention as KSE-100 gains 0.57%

"In addition, with Senate elections due to be held (March 3, 2018), market participants foresaw this as a sign of political stability, thus helping keep bullish sentiments alive at the bourse," the report added.

Overall, trading volumes increased to 230 million shares compared with Thursday's tally of 211 million.

Shares of 371 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 202 stocks closed higher, 153 declined while 16 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs9.6 billion.

Dost Steels was the volume leader with 19.08 million shares, losing Rs0.31 to close at Rs12.70. It was followed by TRG Pak with 15.15 million shares, gaining Rs0.61 to close at Rs37.42 and Byco Petroleum with 13.3 million shares, losing Rs0.46 to close at Rs15.36.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs1.45 billion during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.

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