KARACHI: The stock market endured a bearish session on the first trading day of the week as the benchmark index slipped in the wake of increasing selling pressure.
The KSE-100 index opened upwards but the momentum could not be sustained as anticipation of the outcome of Financial Action Task Force (FATF) review dented sentiment. Investors remained largely on the sidelines as they waited for the result of the meeting.
On the domestic political front, the situation remained uncertain as the opposition prepared for a countrywide protest on October 31.
International crude oil prices dipped during the session, leaving a negative impact on exploration and production (E&P) stocks.
At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded a decrease of 289.43 points, or 0.84%, to settle at 34,186.26 points.
JS Global analyst Danish Ladhani said equities closed Monday on a negative note with the benchmark KSE-100 index shedding 289 points.
"In the financial sector, big banks such as HBL (-1.9%), UBL (-1.2%) and MCB Bank (-1.7%) came under pressure and closed in the negative zone," he said.
Furthermore, among fertiliser stocks, Engro (-0.8%) and Fauji Fertiliser Company (-0.7%) remained in the negative zone. Mixed sentiment was seen in the E&P sector as OGDC (+0.9%) closed in the black but Pakistan Petroleum (-0.4%) and Pakistan Oilfields (-1.1%) remained in the red zone.
"Moving ahead, we expect the market to remain choppy until further clarity emerges on the FATF front," Ladhani added.
"After increasing 3% or 999 points in the last three sessions, investors booked profits in Monday's session, which led to the decline in the index," stated a Topline Securities' report.
"Investors await outcome of the FATF review of Pakistan's compliance report. Furthermore, potential confrontation between the government and opposition parties due to the Azadi march also weighed on investor sentiment," it added.
Commercial banks were the top laggards, contributing 133 points to the index's fall, followed by cement companies, which erased 52 points from the index.
Overall, trading volumes decreased to 137.9 million shares compared with Friday's tally of 287.1 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs4.8 billion.
Shares of 371 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 103 stocks closed higher, 244 declined and 24 remained unchanged.
WorldCall Telecom was the volume leader with 14.3 million shares, losing Rs0.05 to close at Rs1.06. It was followed by TRG Pakistan with 11.6 million shares, losing Rs0.94 to close at Rs15.85 and Lotte Chemical with 9.7 million shares, losing Rs0.06 to close at Rs16.01.
Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of Rs133.7 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.
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