KARACHI: The stock market remained choppy on Tuesday, ending the day in the green after closing negative for four consecutive sessions.
The benchmark KSE-100 index shot up as soon as trading began and after a see-saw movement ended the day positive. It touched an intra-day high of 260 points and dropped to a low of 164 points.
A statement attributed to the federal finance minister which said that a five-year textile package would be announced in the next two weeks sparked interest in textile stocks.
This, along with cherry-picking in fundamentally strong stocks, helped create positive sentiments in the market.
On the other hand, news report that Nepra had finalised a tariff hike of Rs2 per unit for power distribution companies triggered selling, particularly of cement stocks.
At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded an increase of 75.48 points or 0.19% to settle at 40,759.53.
Elixir Securities’ analyst Muhammad Arbash said equities closed marginally positive with the KSE-100 index settling above 40,750 points.
“The market kicked off on a positive note, but could not sustain the early gains and hit an intra-day low of 164 points,” he said.
Recovery was seen towards the end, dominated mainly by retail players with Unity Foods (+5%), Fauji Foods (+5%) and TRG Pakistan (+3%) moving higher and featuring amongst top-five volume leaders.
Bank AL Habib (-1.8%) was the only notable stock among blue chips on the volume leaders’ board which traded over 11 million shares on reported crossings between institutional investors.
“Finance Minister Asad Umar’s assurance of reducing energy tariffs for export-oriented sectors, expectations of further rupee depreciation and anticipation of a textile package brought the sector into the limelight,” the analyst said.
Nishat Mills (+5%), Gul Ahmed Textile Mills (+5%), Nishat Chunian (+5%) and Gadoon Textile Mills (+5%) closed at their respective upper limits.
Overall, trading volumes increased to 139.5 million shares compared with Monday’s tally of 112.6 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs5.76 billion.
Shares of 369 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 219 stocks closed higher, 134 declined, while 16 remained unchanged.
Bank AL Habib was the volume leader with 11.1 million shares, losing Rs1.02 to close at Rs79.9. It was followed by Unity Foods with 11.1 million shares, gaining Rs1.78 to close at Rs41.01 and Fauji Foods with 7.9 million shares, gaining Rs1.7 to close at Rs35.83.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs300.4 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.