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Pakistani stocks close higher, rupee weakens


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A stockbroker at the Karachi Stock Exchange.—File Photo

KARACHI: Pakistan's stock market closed higher on Friday despite a decision by the State Bank of Pakistan to leave the policy rate unchanged at 9.5 percent.

The Karachi Stock Exchange's (KSE) benchmark 100-share index ended 0.54 percent, or 94.62 points, higher at 17,477.94.

Trading in the shares of Askari Bank Ltd dominated the day with a volume of 25 million shares changing hands after the Fauji Group announced that they will take over the bank at a substantial premium to the market price.

The telecom sector was also popular in anticipation of better results after an increase in international calling rates, said Samara Iqbal, a dealer at Top line Securities.

Askari Bank rose 4.87 percent to 19.61 rupees.

World Call Telecom rose 2.25 percent to 3.63 rupees.

In the currency market, the rupee ended weaker at 97.88/97.95 against the dollar, compared to Thursday's close of 97.85/97.92.

Overnight rates in the money market fell to 8.75 percent compared to Thursday's close of 9 percent.

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