KARACHI: The stock market closed flat on Tuesday with the KSE-100 index lightly down by 15.29 points to settle at 33,885.09.
Following the massive erosion, a day earlier, the market opened on a positive note as value hunters sought to pick up over-sold scrips. It propelled the index to intra-day high by 167 points. But as investor sentiments remained weak, the index soon succumbed to selling pressure losing all the gains and sinking to the intra-day decline by 209 points.
The overnight news of Pakistan successfully retaining its emerging market status in the MSCI’s May Review had limited impact as other worries occupied the investors’ mind.
However, later day reports reaching the market of the government approval of Tax Amnesty Scheme to be promulgated through a Presidential Ordinance put a floor under the market fall. Investors who had been watching from the side-lines the whole day entered in the last half hour to buy major index drivers.
Buying was witnessed in the Exploration and Production sector as Pakistan Petroleum Ltd was up 3.8 per cent, Pakistan Oilfields Ltd higher by 2.7pc and Oil and Gas Development Company up 0.9pc.
Most independent power producers closed green on reports that the government was planning to eliminate circular debt by Dec 2020. Nishat Power Ltd, Nishat Chunian Power Ltd, and Hub Power Company Ltd gained between 2-4pc.
Cyclical stocks continued to feel the pinch of anticipated slowdown in economy going forward. Cement stocks were pummelled further as most scrips in the sector finished at their lower circuits including Pioneer Cement, Maple Leaf Cement Factory (MLCF), D G Khan, Kohat and Cherat Cement.
Volumes registered a slight decline of 13pc day-on-day to reach 105.7 million as against 121.2m shares. Average traded value also stood down by 19pc to reach $30.3m as against $37.5m.
Stocks that contributed significantly to the volumes included K-Electric, Unity Foods Ltd, MLCF, Pakistan Int. Bulk Terminal Ltd and TRG Pakistan which made up for the 28pc of total volumes.
Published in Dawn, May 15th, 2019