KARACHI: A day after plunging 844 points, the KSE-100 Index ended positive in a range-bound trading session with late buying helping stocks close in the green.
The index opened on a positive note only to find itself in the red soon after. However, unconfirmed reports of cement prices increasing in the north and results announcements helped the index gain momentum.
At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index finished with an increase of 97.61 points or 0.23% to settle at 42,810.04.
Elixir Securities' analyst Murtaza Jafar said equities closed positive amid thin volumes in main board stocks.
"This resulted in the index entering the red zone in the early hours," said Jafar. "Afterwards, stocks witnessed choppy behavior and the KSE-100 traded in a 400-point range before closing slightly positive.
"Unconfirmed news of an increase in cement retail price by upto Rs10/bag in the north gave momentum to the sector; DG Khan Cement DGKC PA +4.0%, Fauji Cement FCCL PA +4.0%, Maple Leaf Cement MLCF PA +3.7% all closed higher on reported local buying," said Jafar.
Market watch: KSE-100 plunges 844 points as profit-taking sets in
"On the results front, MCB Bank MCB PA -1% announced its half year earning slightly lower than street expectations, while Aisha Steels ASL PA -0.5% also announced its annual result," he added.
"We expect the market to remain range-bound in the coming sessions with flows from foreigners and local institutions guiding market direction amid the ongoing result reason."
Overall, trading volumes increased to 278.4 million shares compared with Tuesday's tally of 274.5 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs10.5 billion.
Shares of 381 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 229 stocks closed higher, 136 declined while 16 remained unchanged.
DS Industries was the volume leader with 43.2 million shares, gaining Rs0.49 to close at Rs6.51. It was followed by PIAC (A) with 14.1 million shares, gaining Rs0.62 to close at Rs7.67 and Engro Polymer with 12.9 million shares, gaining Rs0.92 to close at Rs35.19.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs373 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.
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