KARACHI: Largely in line with the trend seen in the preceding week, the stock market shed points amid weak trading interest.
The KSE-100 index remained volatile in the early half of the day, recording sharp swings albeit in a narrow range. However, after mid-day, absence of triggers led the index to plummet further and hit an intra-day low of 42,472.16 points. International crude price were significantly down at the opening that caused selling pressure in E&P stocks. Likewise, rest of the oil and gas chain bore pressure among refineries and OMCs.
Although, the index managed to pare some of its losses, the overall mood remained wary as investors awaited the monetary policy statement, which is due to be announced on Tuesday. On the international front, Asian market and commodities prices continued to dive due to rapidly spreading coronavirus fears.
At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded a decrease of 93.79 points, or 0.22%, to settle at 42,539.23.
JS Global analyst Maaz Mulla said that the local bourse started the week with volatility, where the KSE-100 index juggled between the green and red, making an intraday high of 106 points and a low of 161 points to close at 42,539 level.
"On the news front, Pakistan is unlikely to exit the grey list of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) next month despite an active support of its close ally China and tactical support of some Western countries."
Furthermore FFL (-6.0%) from the food sector declared its FY19 result, where the company posted a LPS of Rs10.96 per share. ISL (-1.7%) from the steel sector has declared 1HY19 result, where the company declared an EPS of Rs1.07 per share with no cash payout.
A rally was witnessed in the cement sector where CHCC (+3.2%), MLCF (+5.5%), PIOC (+3.9%) and KOHC (+5.5%) closed in the green zone while LUCK (-0.9%) closed red.
"Moving forward, market seems to remain range-bound due to a lack of triggers. Moreover, the results session has just begun and this should stimulate value hunting mainly in banks, textiles and E&Ps," he added.
Overall, trading volumes increased to 198.5 million shares compared with Friday's tally of 173 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs6.6 billion.
Shares of 350 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 166 stocks closed higher, 169 declined and 15 remained unchanged.
Maple Leaf Cement was the volume leader with 25.96 million shares, gaining Rs1.29 to close at Rs24.83. It was followed by Pak Intl Bulk Terminal with 25.2 million shares, gaining Rs0.46 to close at Rs11.83 and Fauji Cement with 12.1 million shares, gaining Rs0.39 to close at Rs17.25.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs35.6 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.
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