KARACHI: Bulls took over the trading floor of the Pakistan Stock Exch­ange on Thursday following the announcement by the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) regarding the date of the next general election.

Topline Securities said share prices experienced a surge amid bullish sentiments attributed to the ECP statement. The development “significantly boosted” the investors’ confidence and led to a “remarkable” increase in the benchmark index, it added.

The official indication that the general election will take place in the last week of January 2024 “effectively dispelled the prolonged political uncertainty” that cast a shadow over investors’ sentiments for many months.

According to Arif Habib Corporation analyst Ahsan Mehanti, a slump of up to 217 basis points in the treasury yields in the latest auction held by the State Bank of Pakistan, along with expectations expr­essed by the Asian Devel­opment Bank on polls and reforms for the stabilisation of the economy, played the role of a catalyst in the positive close.

As a result, the KSE-100 index settled at 46,202.13 points, up 312.55 points or 0.68 per cent from the preceding session.

The overall trading volume increased 33pc to 172.1 million shares. The traded value increased 46.8pc to Rs5.3 billion on a day-on-day basis.

Stocks contributing significantly to the traded volume included Maple Leaf Cement Factory Ltd (15.3m shares), WorldCall Telecom Ltd (7.6m shares), BankIslami Pakistan Ltd (6.7m shares), Unity Foods Ltd (6.7m shares) and Symmetry Group Ltd (5.3m shares).

Companies registering the biggest increases in their share prices in absolute terms were Rafhan Maize Products Company Ltd (Rs200), Premium Textile Mills Ltd (Rs28.36), Blessed Textiles Ltd (Rs27.50), Philip Morris Pakistan Ltd (Rs21.90) and Packages Ltd (Rs14.66).

Companies that recor­ded the biggest declines in their share prices in absolute terms were Unilever Pakistan Foods Ltd (Rs1,155), Colgate-Palmolive Pakistan Ltd (Rs17.94), AKD Hospitality Ltd (Rs10.25), JS Global Capital Ltd (Rs9.15) and Millat Tractors Ltd (Rs8.76).

Foreign investors were net buyers as they purchased shares worth $0.27m.

Published in Dawn, September 22th, 2023

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