KARACHI: Shares went into free fall on the stock market where the KSE-100 index opened in the red and bled to intraday low by 502 points. Diverse negative developments triggered nervousness among investors who hastened to book profits at current levels.
At the close of the session, the index settled below the 42,000 level at 41,828.91, representing day’s decline by 345.23 points or 0.82 per cent.
Traders said the status quo maintained in the September Monetary Policy Meeting on Monday impacted investor sentiments, mainly of late buyers in banking stocks. Moreover, global equities were under pressure as another pandemic lockdown was imposed in Europe which worried over the second wave of Covid-19 cases.
It has more of a sentimental impact, if not so much as economic. Further the rollover week forced leveraged investors to throw away stocks. The word went round that massive shortage of gas could be expected in the upcoming winter season, where even the maximum import of 1.2bcfd of RLNG would be insufficient to avert the gas load shedding.
Foreign investors reduced positions through sale of shares valued at $3.31 million. Among locals, mutual funds also decided to switch from equities to money market funds.
Buying by banks, individuals and insurance companies helped mop up some of the liquidity. The volume increased by a slight 2pc to 441.2 million shares while the traded value surged 14pc to reach $7.9m. The volumes were dominated mainly by sideboard items while main board scrips generally stayed put.
Selling pressure was witnessed across the board. Among banks, Meezan, BOP, United, Habib and Alfalah lost values while Pakistan Oilfields, Pakistan Oilfields and Oil and Gas Development Company turned the exploration and production sector in the red.
Mixed sentiment were witnessed in the cements stock where Pioneer, Cherat, Maple Leaf and DG Khan closed in the green while Lucky, Fauji, Kohat and Power shed values.
Published in Dawn, September 23rd, 2020