KARACHI: Stocks extended the gains for fourth successive session on Thursday with the KSE-100 index closing up by 105.19 points (0.30 per cent) at 35,758.52.
While institutions stayed away from the market, foreigners swooped to cherry-pick blue chips worth $3.16 million. Individuals who had led buying in the last couple of sessions sold shares worth $1.15m as their optimism gave way to fears due to lack of positive triggers and stalled talks between the government and opposition over the Islamabad sit-in.
The risk appetite also diminished due to release of higher-than-expected inflation figure for October, which dimmed hopes of cut in rates in the upcoming monetary policy which until sometime back looked like a strong possibility.
However, decisions taken in the Economic Coordination Committee to support infrastructure and power sectors proved helpful. The index moved in a narrow band between the intraday high and low by 181 and 195 points.
The volume lowered 11pc over the previous day to 265.8m shares while traded value also declined by 24pc to $51.5m. Sector-wise cyclical - cement and steel stocks which have continued to catch the market attention during and prior to the start of the results season - fell from grace as individuals decided to book profit at current levels.
Fertiliser stocks saved the day contributing 60 points to index rise. Investor interest was witnessed in the oil marketing companies on the back of news that the government had linked revision in their margins on petrol and diesel with annual average consumer inflation, which was likely to buffer the sector companies’ profitability.
Major contribution to the index upside came from Pakistan Tobacco, increasing by 4.47pc, Engro Corporation 1.29pc, Pakistan Oilfields 2.28pc, Pakistan State Oil 3.14pc and Hub Power 1.19pc. On the flip side, DG Khan Cement, down 4.58pc, Nestle Pakistan 3.38pc, Fauji Cement 4.03pc, Dawood Hercules 0.99pc and Lucky Cement 0.87pc weighed down on performance.
Published in Dawn, November 8th, 2019