KARACHI: The stock market shed some of the gloom and doom that pervaded the earlier day and after a choppy trade for the most part, the KSE-100 index managed to bounce back slightly with a gain of 55.01 points (0.14 per cent) to close at 39,127.48 on Tuesday.
It opened positive which set at rest the investors’ fears of extension of the ruthless bloodshed witnessed on Monday. The swift buying in attractive scrips on various counters, mainly the cement, pharmaceuticals, technology and refinery enabled the index to climb to intraday high by 277 points.
But the index succumbed to selling pressure mainly from mutual funds which offloaded to meet redemptions and sold shares worth $3.87 million. Other than that, foreigners’ outflow of $3.06m pulled down the benchmark which was supported by individuals, brokers, companies and banks. It bounced back after striking intraday low by 504 points in the red.
Bad news continued to haunt the investors concerning the possibility of a second wave of coronavirus leading to another complete lockdown; growing activity on the political front; the caution over interest rate rise following higher than expected inflation numbers for September and the upsurge in trade deficit by 37pc month-on-month for September. Participants were also spooked over the results of upcoming Financial Action Task Force meeting later in October.
The volume declined 1pc to 406m shares while the traded value decreased 2% to reach $75.3m. However, the gap between the number of declining stocks at 132 and advancing scrips at 200 narrowed down.
Recovery in international oil prices due to demand optimism did not quite reflect on the exploration and production stocks. Cement saw active buying activity till the end of the session. Major scrips that contributed to support the index included Engro Corporation, up 0.7pc, Hub Power 0.2pc, Pakistan Petroleum 0.1pc, United Bank 0.3pc and Pakistan State Oil 0.2pc.
Published in Dawn, October 7th, 2020