KARACHI: The stock market witnessed a selling spree on Thursday triggered by the deteriorating law and order situation in Karachi. The KSE-100 benchmark index lost 141 points or 1.25% to end the day at 11,128.52 points.
A fresh wave of violence gripped Karachi with at least 39 people killed over two days in gang wars and political disputes.
Sentiment remained bearish after fall in Asian markets on global growth worries and Eurozone debt crisis, said Arif Habib Investments Director Ahsan Mehanti.
Lower than expected earnings per share of Rs4.84 and low payout by National Bank of Pakistan, limited institutional and foreign interest played a catalyst role in the negative close at Karachi Stock Exchange, he added.
Foreign institutional investors were rumored sellers in the fertilizer and banking stocks while local institutions were sellers in cements and energy scripts, said JS Global analyst Murtaza Jafar.
Foreign institutional investors continued their selling spree and were net sellers of Rs126.7 million worth of shares during the trade session, according to data compiled by National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.
Shares of 50 companies rose while 148 companies declined and 87 remained unchanged.
Trade volumes fell to a gloomy level of 41.6 million shares compared with Wednesday’s 46.3 million shares. The total value of trade on Wednesday was worth Rs2.15 billion. Lotte Pakistan PTA was the volume leader with 6.06 million shares gaining Rs0.06 to finish at Rs11.13. It was followed by Lucky Cement Limited with 3.93 million shares with a loss of Rs0.24 to close at Rs71.93 and National Bank of Pakistan with 3.78 million shares decreasing by Rs2.28 to close at Rs43.47.
Interest was seen in Lotte Pakistan PTA ahead of its six month result, said Topline Securities equity dealer Samar Iqbal. Moreover, Lucky Cement remained active following solid margins posted by the company, she added.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 19th, 2011.