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KARACHI: Stocks extended losses for the third consecutive session on Tuesday with the KSE-100 index declining by 169.63 points (0.41 per cent) to close at 41,564.42.

The three-session loss accumulated to 434 points as investors continued to fret over political uncertainty and economic slowdown.

Sentiment remained on the back-burner as dearth of market-moving triggers and concerns on politics, economy and foreign selling kept market participants away. Analysts said that the worries over the external account situation as well as political noise due to upcoming elections are keeping the market under pressure.

Commercial banks and oil and gas exploration companies remained major decliners which together wiped off 86 points from the index. On the economic front, the positive news flow was the statement by caretaker minister for information and broadcasting that over Rs100 billion have been generated so far from the tax amnesty scheme while more inflows were expected.

Analyst Ahsan Mehanti stated that foreign outflows, surging external account imbalances and higher energy prices impacting corporate earnings outlook played a catalyst role in the bearish close despite expectations of upbeat cement sales data for July-June FY18 and robust economic growth outlook.

The volume improved 104 million shares, up 23pc from 95m shares the previous day. The traded value rose 6pc to Rs.3.708m. Fauji Fertiliser from the food sector led the market volume with 7.4m shares.

Selling pressure was witnessed in banking where United Bank was down 1.44pc, Habib Bank 0.88pc, Bank Alfalah 0.52pc and MCB Bank 0.19pc to close in the red. Mixed sentiments were seen in the cement sector with Pioneer Cement, up 1.90pc, Maple Leaf Cement 0.99pc and Fauji Cement 1.12pc closing in the green while Attock Cement, lower by 2.93pc, Kohinoor Cement 2pc and Cherat Cement 1.89pc closed in the red zone.

Published in Dawn, July 4th, 2018