The stock market closed range-bound on Thursday in thin trade owing to the poor law and order situation in the city.
The Karachi Stock Exchange’s (KSE) benchmark 100-share index crawled up 0.04 per cent or 4.81 points to end at 12,267.33 point level.
Equities remained gripped with uncertainty after a late night speech by senior PPP minister Zulfiqar Mirza against the Muttahida Qaumi Movement which caused riots in the city, said Elixir Securities equity dealer Sibtain Mustafa
Media reports of violence in certain pockets of the city resulted in lower volumes, added Mustafa.
Trade volumes fell to at least a ten-month low of 25 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 42 million shares.
To add fuel to the negativity, Engro’s new fertiliser plant was shut down owing to gas cut while the company increased fertiliser prices to nullify the loss from plant closure. The corporation stock fell Rs3.54 to close at Rs155.94.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers Rs28.4 million, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.
Shares of 249 companies were traded on Thursday. At the end of the day 60 stocks closed higher, 108 declined while 80 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs1.16 billion.
Surprisingly, the price hike continues to go in favour of Fauji Fertiliser Group as it continues to enjoy higher margins owing to price hike of fertiliser bags, said Mustafa.
Byco Petroleum was the volume leader with 7.52 million shares gaining Rs0.06 to finish at Rs9.27. It was followed by Fauji Fertiliser with 2.35 million shares firming Rs1.76 to close at Rs157.7 and Fauji Fertiliser Bin Qasim with 2.07 million shares increasing Rs0.13 to close at Rs45.59.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 15th, 2011.