KARACHI: Despite witnessing a volatile session, the Karachi bourse managed to close in the red but above the key psychological 23,000-point level owing to support from the banking sector. Moreover, positive earnings announcement made by the telecom giant Pakistan Telecommunication Company also protected the index from falling below 23,000 points despite Engro Corporation hurting sentiments of investors.
The Karachi Stock Exchange’s (KSE) benchmark 100-share index fell marginally by 0.05% or 11.46 points to end at 23,160.89 points. Trade volumes, however, rose to 223 million shares compared with Monday’s tally of 206 million shares.
“Mainly led by Engro Corporation, the index lost 11 points,” reported Samar Iqbal, head of equity sales at Topline Securities.
“Profit-taking was witnessed in Engro as its Enven fertiliser plant is yet to receive 60 million cubic feet per day of gas diverted through the Mari network from Guddu power plant as rumours circulate that negotiations are still in progress with the government for allocation,” said Mujtaba Barakzai, analyst at JS Global Capital.
The banking, on the other side, has remained in the limelight in anticipation of a cut in savings deposit rate, as National Bank of Pakistan led the rally, hitting its respective upper lock.
Semi-annual results announcement by Pakistan Telecommunication Company of Rs1.23 per share (unconsolidated) against a loss of Rs0.15 in the previous year and declaration of a cash payout after two years was made minutes before close of the session and was not able to deliver the full impact on the index.
The value of shares traded during the day was Rs10.46 billion.
Pakistan Telecommunication Company was the volume leader with 21.48 million shares gaining Rs0.67 to finish at Rs25.5. It was followed by National Bank of Pakistan with 18.79 million shares gaining Rs2.62 to close at Rs55.03 and Pakistan International Airlines with 17.22 million shares losing Rs0.24 to close at Rs8.82.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs102 million, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 17th, 2013.
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