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KARACHI: Markets closed negative on Monday after Finance Minister Asad Umar-led Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) failed to announce key decisions to deal with the ongoing economic crisis asking for another 2-3 weeks for a definite plan. Markets dipped early on, falling to 41,192 but went on to recover 390 points from its intraday low.

The KSE-100 index ended the first day of week in red, decreasing by 160.28 points (0.38 per cent) to close at 41,581.96 after autos, commercial banks, fertiliser and cement stocks closed down.

The traded volume fell 0.4pc to 159.2 million shares while value declined 26pc to $42.2m as investors continued to remain aloof amidst ongoing macro uncertainty. K-Electric led the volume with 16.72m after reports suggesting its sale was on the ECC agenda, trailed by Al-Ghazi Tractors at 14.45m, Worldcall Telecom 8m, Hum Network 7.29 and Lotte Chemical 6.3m.

Pakistan Bureau of Statistics announced consumer price inflation numbers for August at 5.83pc - slightly above average market expectations. Additional drag to the index came from the US announcement of withdrawing $300m aid pledged to Pakistan only days before the Secretary Mike Pompeo’s visit to Islamabad.

During today’s session, key negative contributors included automobile assemblers, lower by 29.45 points, commercial banks 26.6 points, fertiliser 24.45 points and cement 15.12 points.

Leading decliners were Indus Motors, down 1.88pc, Millat Tractors 2.24pc, Atlas Honda 4.98pc, Jubilee Life Insurance 1.69pc and Thal Limited 2.33pc, cumulatively taking away 100 points. On the flip side, major gainers included Agritech Industries, up 5pc, Archroma Pakistan 1.36pc, Pakistan Oilfields 0.8pc and Mari Petroleum 0.10pc.

Market sentiment, in part, was driven by the net foreign selling which reached to $3.9 billion with individual buying rising to $3.8m by day end.

Published in Dawn, September 4th, 2018