KARACHI: Marking a poor start to the week, the benchmark KSE-100 index fell on Monday as investors grew more concerned that economic slowdown in the country would be longer than expected.
The market opened upwards but the uptrend lost momentum soon with mounting selling pressure as the opposition’s anti-government campaign drove the market down in later hours.
Concern over the release of Rs200-billion Sukuk for oil and gas marketing companies and the power sector had a strong bearing on the market and aggressive selling was recorded in stocks of Sui Northern Gas Pipelines, Pakistan State Oil (PSO) and Hubco.
At the end of trading, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded a decrease of 447.34 points, or 1.31%, to settle at 33,742.68.
Next Capital analyst M Faizan said the stock market’s decline deepened with the KSE-100 index sliding 447.34 points to settle at 33,742.68.
He said the market was pricing in the harsh reality that the economic slowdown was more likely to linger on and may not be quickly resolved. Selling was seen across the board with cement, exploration and production, and bank stocks contributing the most to the market’s fall.
“Market participation increased and KSE-100 volumes rose to 47 million shares from 42 million in the previous session,” he said.
Major contribution to the total market volumes came from K-Electric, Maple Leaf Cement and TRG Pakistan, which accounted for cumulative trading in 15 million shares out of the total market all-share volume of 59 million shares.
“The daily traded value for the KSE-100 index increased to $14 million from $11 million in the previous session,” Faizan added.
Overall, trading volumes increased to 59.6 million shares compared with Friday’s tally of 51.3 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs2.36 billion.
Shares of 306 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 49 stocks closed higher, 237 declined and 20 remained unchanged.
K-Electric was the volume leader with 7.44 million shares, losing Rs0.21 to close at Rs4.01. It was followed by Maple Leaf Cement with 4.4 million shares, losing Rs0.49 to close at Rs23.27 and TRG Pakistan with 3.6 million shares, losing Rs0.69 to close at Rs16.
Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of Rs97.7 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.