Market watch: Small, mid caps lead the way again

Benchmark KSE-100 index rises 38 points.

Our Correspondent December 21, 2012

KARACHI: The market was seen driving back uphill as small- and mid-tier stocks churned decent volumes on better investor participation. The highly-leveraged cement stocks remained on the investor’s radar along with bullish sentiments in the fertiliser sector. As the year comes to a close, result-related excitement prevailed.

The Karachi Stock Exchange’s (KSE) benchmark 100-share index rose 0.23% or 38.19 points to end at 16,908.02 point level. Trade volumes improved to 185 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 114 million shares.

The local bourse managed to close on a positive note although activity in blue chips remained low yet again; overall it was a dull day due to lack of institutional participation before Christmas and New Year holidays, reported Nazim Abdul Muttalib, analyst at Elixir Securities.

Byco Petroleum became a favourite, hitting its upper lock, as it announced earlier it had completed its oil refinery in Lasbela district which will have the capacity to refine 120,000 barrels of oil per day, deemed to be country’s largest oil refinery.

TRG Pakistan, which manages call centres in the country’s three biggest cities, also hit its upper limit on announcement that the IT firm’s board approved evaluation on admission to Alternative Investment Market – a sub-market of the London Stock Exchange – via its subsidiary DG Services.

Engro Corporation again faced the red flag as traders desperately wait for concrete news regarding gas supply, while reports of foreign selling dragged the stock down.

Shares of 398 companies were traded on Thursday. At the end of the day 167 stocks closed higher, 173 declined while 58 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs3.74 billion.

TRG Pakistan – IT firm – was the volume leader with 35.26 million shares gaining Re1 to finish at Rs5.03. It was followed by Byco Petroleum with 21.02 million shares gaining Re1 to close at Rs12.34 and Maple Leaf Cement with 14.60 million shares rising Rs0.43 to close at Rs15.29.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs123.54 million, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 21st, 2012.



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