KARACHI: The Karachi bourse maintained its upward momentum as the index heavyweight, Oil and Gas Development Company and other blue-chips, including MCB Bank dominated the ticker chart on reported foreign interest.
The Karachi Stock Exchange’s (KSE) benchmark 100-share index gained 0.51% or 92.76 points to end at the 18,173.67 point level. Trade volumes improved to 318 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 270 million shares.
“Led by MCB Bank and Engro Corporation, the local bourse closed at an all-time high with healthy volumes,” reported Samar Iqbal, equity dealer at Topline Securities. MCB Bank closed up Rs7.58 at Rs231.78.
Ongoing news flow of Engro signing an agreement with gas producers for its fuel-starved fertiliser unit kept it in the limelight while Engro’s parent Dawood Hercules also hit its upper lock on reversal of fortune of its subsidiary.
Shares of 382 companies were traded on Thursday. At the end of the day 151 stocks closed higher, 186 declined while 45 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs9.53 billion.
The telecom sector seemed to have hit a roadblock as the rumour that the Competition Commission of Pakistan issued a show-cause notice to Pakistan Telecommunication Company kept the sector under pressure. On the other hand, decent earnings announcement by Telecard later in the day led to a minor recovery, reported Jawwad Aboobakar, analyst at Elixir Securities.
Moreover, Pakistan Oilfields closed negative as investors booked profits prior to commencement of spot trading in early March.
The textile giant, Nishat Mills, continued to rally on better than consensus earnings reported by the company last week.
Furthermore, National Refinery hit its upper lock of 5% after a protracted period of underperformance with some market whispers of deemed duty (protection duty) going up doing the rounds.
Telecard was the volume leader with 56.13 million shares gaining Rs0.01 to finish at Rs7.41. It was followed by Pakistan International Airlines with 42.15 million shares gaining Re1 to close at Rs6.32 and Pakistan Telecommunication Company with 29.04 million shares shedding Rs0.09 to close at Rs23.44.
Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of Rs560 million, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 1st, 2013.
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