KARACHI, Dec 6: Bulls charged yet again at the Karachi Stock Exchange on Thursday with the KSE-100 index gaining 148.85 points to close at 16,824.55 points.

Nearing the 17,000 level, the nervous and the savvy investors took a careful step, but retail investors, in particular, seemed in no mood to be restrained.

The market thus, saw across the board buying.

"Without the heavy-weight energy sector, which witnessed little activity, the index rise of nearly 150 points in a day in incredible," said an analyst.

The turnover rose to 258 million shares on Thursday, from 234 million shares the previous day, while the trading value jumped to Rs6.9bn, from Rs5.6bn on Wednesday.

Market capitalisation edged higher to Rs4.204 trillion, from Rs4.173 trillion.

Foreign investors sold $1.03 million worth equity on Thursday. Among local participants, banks were aggressive buyers of $4.87 million worth share.

Companies offloaded $3.51 million and Mutual Funds stocks valued at $0.9 million.

Analyst Ahsan Mehanti said that the index closed at highest level amid higher volume with investor interest across leading sectors on hopes for rate cut in upcoming SBP policy announcement.

Higher global commodities, higher cement sales data, rising urea and DAP off-take data for November 2012 and improved textile sector valuations on EU export relaxations played a catalyst role in bullish sentiments.

Equity trader Samar Iqbal at Topline Securities stated that another record was set on Thursday as equity prices rose further with rising volumes.

After many months, MCB bank with a gain of 5pc helped index to see new high.

PIA also saw increased activity as investors expect government to pump more money in the loss making company.

Lucky and DG Cement also witnessed fresh buying after remaining dull for last few sessions.

Hasnain Asghar Ali at Escorts Capital raises the slogan: "Records are made to be broken!”

He observed that fresh flows in the banking and fertilizer stocks kept the benchmark on gaining grounds, that was secured by cement and other stocks.

Although volumetric contribution of KSE-100 companies did stay on the lower side, other low priced stocks from almost all the sectors made substantial contribution which helped keep turnover above the 250 million share mark.

The activity, analyst said, provided ample opportunities to the day traders, but analyst called for caution.

In all, 386 stocks were traded on Thursday, with 256 gainers; 115 losers and 15 remaining unchanged.

Unilever Pakistan was the biggest gainer for the day with Rs149.89 added to its price which rose to Rs9953.45. It was followed by Unilever Food up by Rs100 to Rs4,290.

Among biggest losers, Bata (Pak) was down by Rs50.67 to Rs1599 and Indus Dyeing lost Rs22.87 to Rs567.13.

The volume leaders list was dominated by Byco Petroleum, which gained maximum 99 paisa to close at Rs11.66 on a huge turnover of 24m shares. The interest in the petroleum marketing company was triggered by news of Byco joining race to acquire Chevron Pakistan operations.

Fauji Cement was down by 2 paisa to Rs6.80 on 16m shares. The financially mired in woes, national airline PIA saw its stock price hit the ‘upper circuit’ by gain of Re1 to Rs3.58 on 14m shares; PTCL was up 29 paisa to Rs17.30 on 8m shares; Lotte Pak PTA was up by 10 paisa to Rs7.33 on 8m shares; Nishat Mills rose by 88 paisa to Rs65.10 on 7m shares; Jah.Sidd.Co declined by 22 paisa to Rs18.55 on 7m shares and some investors saw value in laggard Nimir Industrial Chemicals, which pushed its stock price higher by 59 paisa to Rs4.27 on 6m shares.

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