KARACHI: Stocks extended the rally for the fourth consecutive session on Thursday with the KSE-100 index recording gains of 389 points (1.20 per cent) and settling at 32,752.26.
The investors’ optimism was underpinned by the anticipated meeting of businessmen with the army chief for greater security measures to increase economic activity. The euphoria gave investors reasons to set aside fears of the outcome of Financial Action Task Force, higher interest rate and inflationary pressures.
The market also did not follow the international stock market slump as investors entered in droves to pick up equities which pushed volumes to 11-month high at 324.1 million shares.
Although foreign investors went into sell-off mode disposing off equities worth $6.09m and banks followed with profit-taking of $1.37m, the liquidity was successfully mopped up by the companies that bought shares worth 2.48m; individuals and brokers who took fresh positions in shares valued at $2.12m and $1.27m, respectively.
Pharmaceutical stocks were the winners with Searle Company, AGP, Ferozsons, GlaxoSmithKline, IBL Healthcare and Macter International hitting their upper circuits as different media sources reported possible hike in medicine prices. Cement continued to remain on investors’ radar after recent hike in prices in the North zone, coupled with expectation of double digit growth in despatches for September. Maple Leaf, DG Khan, Cheratand Bestway scaled to their upper limit.
International oil prices showed negative trend, but the exploration and production scrips managed to stay afloat with nominal price gains. Investors’ interest was seen in fertiliser sector as well where Engro Corporation and Fauji were the major gainers. Mixed sentiments were seen in the financials where Habib Bank and MCB closed in the green zone but United Bank witnessed some pressure.
Scrip-wise major contribution to the index upside came from Lucky Cement, higher by 2.77pc, Engro 1.27pc, Fauji Fertiliser 1.41pc, DG Khan Cement 4.99pc, Dawood Hercules 1.17pc, Habib Bank 1.56pc, National Bank 4.98pc, MCB 0.91pc, Bank Al Habib 0.90pc, K-Electric 9.07pc, Hub Power 1.01pc and Sui Northern Gas 2.10pc.
Published in Dawn, October 4th, 2019