KARACHI: Equities posted another mixed session on Thursday as investors feared the upcoming budget might include new taxes.

Arif Habib Ltd said the benchmark of representative shares on the Pakistan Stock Exchange opened in the green, but volatile activity pushed it to the lower side. Another reason for pessimism was the depreciation in the currency market.

“Investors are taking a cautious attitude owing to the rumours about new taxes in the forthcoming budget,” it said, adding that the trading volume remained decent across the board with third-tier equities dominating the volume board.

As a result, the KSE-100 index settled at 41,029.68 points, down 87.6 points or 0.21 per cent from the preceding session.

The overall trading volume increased 18.7pc to 125.3 million shares. The traded value went up 57.4pc to $14.1m on a day-on-day basis.

Stocks contributing significantly to the traded volume included Gul Ahmed Textile Mills Ltd (10.7m shares), Pakistan Refinery Ltd (8.3m shares), WorldCall Telecom Ltd (8.1m shares), Globe Residency REIT Ltd (5.2m shares) and Maple Leaf Cement Factory Ltd (5.2m shares).

Sectors contributing the most to the index performance were technology and communication (-69.3 points), commercial banking (-22.8 points), textile composite (-10.6 points), pharmaceutical (-8.3 points) and leather and tanneries (-7.0 points).

Companies registering the biggest increases in their share prices in absolute terms were Blessed Textiles Ltd (Rs27.75), Faisal Spinning Mills Ltd (Rs25.17), Al-Abbas Sugar Mills Ltd (Rs24.37), Philip Morris Pakistan Ltd (Rs22.86) and Sanofi-Aventis Pakistan Ltd (Rs19.83).

Companies that recorded the biggest declines in their share prices in absolute terms were Bata Pakistan Ltd (Rs73.67), Service Industries Ltd (Rs13.32), Pakistan Tobacco Company Ltd (Rs11.40), Pakistan Services Ltd (Rs10.10) and Sitara Chemical Industries Ltd (Rs9.92).

Foreign investors were net sellers as they offloaded shares worth $1.23m.

Published in Dawn, May 26th, 2023

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