KARACHI: Selling pressure intensified at the stock exchange on the third trading day of the week where the KSE-100 index spiralled downwards to intraday low by 523 points causing a bit of commotion. Almost all the current favourites on various sectors such as technology, refinery, autos and pharmaceuticals dipped down, several to their lower circuits.

The index succumbed to selling pressure after initial gains of 159 points. It closed with a heavy loss of 366.17 points, or 0.80 per cent, at 45,362.58.

Investors decided to liquidate positions on rising noise on the political scene. The ongoing FATF plenary meeting also kept investors in check who braced for an early decision, while the rollover week was said to have exerted pressure on the roll-over heavy scrips (TRG and Netsol).

Analysts said that 36pc positions had been rollover. Some unfounded rumours regarding inquiry on technology scrips were quashed by the regulator and the companies concerned.

On the refinery sector, NRL also saw significant selling that brought the stock to lower circuit a number of times, followed by recovery. Exploration & Production sector scrapped 48 points from the index due to drop in international oil prices.

Other laggards among sectors included fertilizer (46 points), Textile (41 points), power (38 points) and O&GMCs (35 points). Scrips that dragged down the index were OGDC (32 points), Engro (26 points), PSO (24 points), NBP (23 points) and Hubco (22 points). Banking sector saw an uptick in HBL, MCB and BOP. In the cement sector Lucky posted nominal gains while most others finished in the negative.

Brokers proprietary trading witnessed major profit-taking in the sum of $4m while individuals also sold shares worth $2.83m. The buyers were mainly foreigners of shares worth $3.70m. Banks and companies also took fresh positions at low values.

The traded volume declined 22pc over the previous day to 557.5m shares while the value increased slightly by 3pc to Rs26.2bn.

Published in Dawn, February 25th, 2021

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