The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) experienced another bearish session on Thursday with the benchmark KSE-100 Index plunging 266 points, or 0.66 per cent, to close at 40,237 points.
It was the fourth consecutive trading day where the market adopted a negative trend.
The index saw some positive activity in the first few minutes of the trading, but failed to sustain the momentum. The index hit a day's high at 40,792 points but eventually slid to the day's low at 39,834 points in the second half of the session.
Volumes edged up, with 138 million shares worth Rs6.1 billion traded in the session. Of the 373 symbols traded, 76 advanced, 281 declined while 16 remained unchanged.
Senior analyst Ahsan Mehanti said stocks closed lower amid investor concerns over economic uncertainty after the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics reported a $9bn record trade deficit for Jul-Sep 2017.
"Foreign inflows, upbeat car sales data for Sep '17 and recovery in global crude prices invited mid session support," he said, adding that political noise, surging government debt, dismal fertiliser offtake data for Jul-Sep and uncertainty over outcome of the EU's GSP plus review played a catalyst role in the bearish close.
The communication sector led the market with 17mn shares, followed by the power generation and the engineering sector with 15mn and 13.3mn shares.
Volumes were led by:
K-Electric Ltd: 13.5m shares traded [+0.32pc];
TRG Pak Ltd: 8.2m shares traded [-2.77pc];
Aisha Steel Mill: 7.3m shares traded [-3.23pc];
WorldCall Telecom: 7.1m shares traded [-6.79pc];
Pak Elektron: 4.3m shares traded [-3.32pc].