Market watch: Stocks close flat as major results fail to create a stir

Benchmark KSE-100 index adds 15 points.


Our Correspondent August 09, 2012

KARACHI: The Wednesday’s bull run failed to sustain through Thursday, and the stock market witnessed yet another day of range-bound activity. It seemed the bulls ran out of breath fairly quickly, as the market added a meager 15 points in day marked by lower participation than the preceding session.

“The market seesawed throughout the day, with leading corporate giants like the Oil and Gas Development Company, Pakistan State Oil and Indus motors announcing their results,” said Samar Iqbal, equity dealer at Topline Securities. “Retail investors were cautious today due to confusing signals regarding the policy rate to be announced on Friday,” she added.

The Karachi Stock Exchange’s (KSE) benchmark 100-share index crawled up 0.10% or 15.45 points to end at the 14,759.59 points level. Trade volumes dropped to 74 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 74 million shares. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs3.05 billion.

“Pakistan State Oil became the major highlight of the day, as it announced a bonus share [dividend] of 20% with its full-year result, and ended the day up by 3.5%,” reported Shakir Padela, analyst at JS Global. “Engro also got investors’ attention today, as market participants are expecting a rate cut in the upcoming monetary policy, which should have a positive earnings impact [on the stock] due to its high leverage.”

“Pakistan Petroleum moved up another 1.6%, as the market is expecting a cash and share dividend with its full-year result, expected on the coming Monday,” he added. He said the new petroleum policy will bode well for the company.

Shares of 325 companies were traded on Thursday. At the end of the day 131 stocks closed higher, 127 declined while 67 remained unchanged. Jahangir Siddiqui Company was the volume leader with 6.06 million shares gaining Rs0.38 to finish at Rs15.11. It was followed by Karachi Electric Supply Company, with 4.96 million shares losing Rs0.22 to close at Rs4.27 and Maple Leaf Cement with 4.11 million shares gaining Rs0.10 to close at Rs7.38.

Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of Rs109.57 million, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 10th, 2012.

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