KARACHI: Stocks exten­ded their decline to the last day of trading week with the KSE-100 index taking another dip of 212 points (0.50 per cent) to settle for the weekend at 40,243.

Investor participation remained thin as the market remained concerned over the increased cut-off yield of T-bills. Traders said the investors were keeping an eye on the ongoing negotiations with the Inter­national Moneta­ryFund for the second tranche with uncertainty surrounding the mini-budget.

Worries over the looming Financial Action Task Force review to start from Feb 16 also kept investors on the sidelines. Selective buying by value hunters ahead of the major corporate results announcements put a floor under a major index fall.

Like the previous day, the market opened on a positive note but the index juggled between intraday high and low of 139 and 180 points on alternative bouts of buying and selling by punters and day traders.

Trading picked up momentum in the last hour that saw some recovery with Pakistan State Oil showing an upside as the news relating to Sukuk II reached the market. Corporate results that had been unveiled provided no surprises except for the DG Khan Cement. Most banks are showing results in line with expectations.

The volume eroded by 41pc to 117.5m shares while traded value also plunged by 47pc to reach $24.5m, as against $46m. Stocks that contributed significantly included Pakistan Intern­ational Bulk Terminal, Lotte Chemical, Hascol Petroleum, Avanceon Ltd and Unity Foods, which formed 48pc of total turnover.

Sectors contributing to the dismal performance included exploration and production, down 49 points, tobacco 38 points, oil and gas marketing companies 28 points, fertiliser 23 points whereas banks added 32 points.

Among scrips, major drag to index performance were Pakistan Tobacco, lower by 6pc, Dawood Hercules 2.68pc, Pakistan Oilfields 1.64pc, Engro Corporation 0.77pc, Oil and Gas Develo­pment Company 0.73pc, Ba­nk Alfalah 1.65pc, Habib Metro 2.82pc, Pakistan State Oil 1.29pc, Faisal Bank 5.40pc and National Bank 2.16pc.

Published in Dawn, February 15th, 2020