KARACHI: Positive sentiments continued to prevail at the stock market on Thursday as the KSE-100 index ended its third successive session in the black.
In the morning, trading kicked off on a bearish note and the index dipped over 200 points, hitting an intra-day low of 39,236. However, it faced some resistance at that point and began to pick up later.
Buying interest was mainly concentrated in chemical, auto, bank, engineering and fertiliser stocks.
At close, the KSE 100-share Index recorded an increase of 288.36 points or 0.73% to settle at 39,875.12.
Elixir Securities’ analyst Murtaza Jafar said Pakistan equities managed to notch up gains after a shallow start.
“The market opened gap down as index-heavy exploration and production stocks borne the brunt of selling following a decline in global crude prices as demand concerns grew due to US-China trade war,” Jafar said.
The benchmark index dipped 0.9% and stayed in the red by midday amid thin volumes. Later, fertiliser stocks led the recovery on reported buying by domestic investors with Engro Corp (+2.4%), Fauji Fertilizer Company (+3.1%) and Engro Fertilizers (+3.4%) collectively contributing 114 points.
“Gains are likely to be restricted on Friday in the wake of return of ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif whose arrest warrants have been issued by the accountability court on corruption charges,” the analyst added.
Overall, trading volumes decreased to 108.9 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 128.4 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs4.8 billion.
Shares of 333 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 191 stocks closed higher, 125 declined while 17 remained unchanged.
Pakistan International Bulk Terminal (R) was the volume leader with 5.9 million shares, losing Rs0.01 to close at Rs0.76. It was followed by Fauji Cement with 5.2 million shares, losing Rs0.40 to close at Rs20.60 and Engro Polymer (R) with 4.9 million shares, gaining Rs0.49 to close at Rs6.15.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs767.9 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.