KARACHI: The spectacular rally at the stock market concluded the week with the benchmark KSE-100 index storming past the 47,000 level — a feat accomplished after about four years. The index had last stepped over that level on June 15, 2017.
After a day’s breather, the bulls returned to the market on Friday with a vengeance and tossed the index up by 336 points, or 0.70 per cent, to close at 47,126.29 taking the entire week’s accumulated gains to 1,211 points, or 2.60pc, regardless of it being the roll-over week.
The spell of breaking new traded volume records came to a halt as the aggregate turnover fell 57pc to 960m shares from incredible 2.22bn shares traded on Thursday. The speculators’ frenzy of churning out volumes in the penny stock Worldcall died down as it posted volume of 380m shares, taking a dip of 60pc from 950m shares that changed hands on Thursday. Most market watchers said that the stocks were on fire and there was yet room to go up on promise of an industry-friendly budget for 2021-22 to be presented on June 11.
Arif Habib, former chairman of the exchange, said that a string of positive news garnered investors’ interest. Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin had projected GDP growth at a comfortable 3.94pc for the current year with hopes of improving it to 5pc next year. He had also provided relief to the investors by stating that Pakistan had informed both the World Bank and IMF that it was not possible to raise tariffs or taxes under the current programme.
Mr Habib said that besides the improvement in the country’s economic indicators, the stocks also presented attractive valuations. “Almost all sectors were turning out exceptionally bright financial results,” he said, adding that the high turnover at the market spurs confidence among investors.
Zulqarnain Khan, executive director at Next Capital also attributed the market upside to the positive statements coming from the finance minister. He said that the economy was clearly showing signs of growth. Both large-scale manufacturing and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) had started to perform.
He said the decision to curb imported good in support of localisation had created demand for local goods. The growth in exports in the face of strengthening rupee pointed to the capture of new markets as well as increasing competitiveness of local goods in international markets, he said.
Research analysts said that on Thursday, the macro news flow on Pakistan’s green bond helped in lifting investor sentiment, which was further supplemented by higher international crude oil prices.
Published in Dawn, May 29th, 2021