KARACHI: Stocks drift­­ed along aimlessly for the third day since the investors were disinclined to go long mainly as the date of announcement of the outcome of the five-day FATF meeting draws closer.

The decision would be published on Friday after the end of the meeting in Paris. Traders continued to draw meaning from the statement of Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi that “FATF has no justification to keep Pakistan on its grey list” as the country had completed work on 26 of the 27 points and the remaining item was being addressed. Was there a threat of being left in the grey list? Many asked.

The KSE-100 index opened in the positive and oscillated between the intraday high and low by 148 and 114 points. The index closed with another nominal loss of 86 points, or 0.18 per cent, at 47,900. Rising oil prices and depreciation of the rupee were other sources of concern for the investors.

Sectors-wise banks, cements, vanaspati, technology were major drag on the index. Refineries were able to secure gains maintaining positive momentum throughout the session as the finance minister was reported to have agreed to include a 10-year income tax holiday for the existing refineries in the finance bill.

E&P took flight mid-day but succumbed to selling pressure. OGDC saw high volumes as a decision regarding its inclusion in list of state-owned companies was expected. Stocks that contributed positively to the index included EFERT (14 points), FCEPL (11 points), OGDC (10 points), MTL (8 points) and NRL (7 points). The major scrips that pulled the index down were Unity Foods (21 points), Lucky Cement (20.91 points), TRG (15.71 points), HBL (12.6 points), and PSO (10.99 points).

The trading volume increased from 610.7m shares to 619.1m shares. The traded value rose by 20pc to reach $117.6m as some high-priced shares came in for trading that contributed significantly to the volume included Silkbank, Worldcall, TPL, Byco and BOP, which formed 31pc of total turnover.

Published in Dawn, June 24th, 2021

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