Market Watch: Bears take over the stock market

KSE’s benchmark 100-share index falls 70 points.


Express December 21, 2011

KARACHI: The burst in volume and the upward spree seen in the index was short-lived as bears returned to the market on Wednesday as investors opted to book profits.

The Karachi Stock Exchange’s (KSE) benchmark 100-share index fell 0.61 per cent or 69.49 points to end at 11,268.55 point level.

Investors booked profits as investors await resolution on capital gain tax issues at the bourse, said Arif Habib Investments Director Ahsan Mehanti. Tax authorities are expected to meet on Friday to discuss matters including capital gains tax on equities. Strong rumours resurfaced over change in capital gains tax collection methodology for individual investors with some hinting at a deduction of additional tax.

Engro Corporation fell by 2.4% followed by Fauji Fertilizer Company by 1.6% on news of the government finalising a decision to increase gas cost for fertiliser companies. Although, late buying in the sector helped recover early losses as news hit the market of increase in fertiliser urea prices by Rs100 per 50kg bag. Fatima Fertilizer rose 1.5% as its 10-year contract with the government allows the company to enjoy fixed gas prices.

Trade volumes fell to paltry level of 47 million shares compared with Tuesday’s six week high of 78 million shares.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs71 million worth of shares, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.

Fatima Fertilizer Company was the volume leader with 8.87 million shares gaining Rs0.33 to finish at Rs22.82. It was followed by Engro Corporation with 4.66 million shares declining Rs2.35 to close at Rs94.21 and Hub Power Company with 3.88 million shares losing Rs1.02 to close at Rs34.5.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 22nd, 2011.

 

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