KARACHI: Bullish sentiments prevailed in the stock market for the fourth consecutive session on Monday, briefly propelling the KSE 100-share index above the 66,000-point level.

The emerging political stability after the smooth election of Shehbaz Sharif as the 24th prime minister of Pakistan helped the market sustain its overnight bullish momentum.

Topline Securities Ltd said the market extended its winning streak on the prevailing political optimism as the index reached an intraday high of 681.75 points climbing to 66,007.44 and a low of 206.90 points to 65,325.68 points.

Furthermore, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has proposed a doubling of taxes for both salaried and non-salaried individuals to the Federal Board of Revenue. Additionally, it recommends raising the general sales tax rate to 18pc for various essential items such as unprocessed food, stationery, medicines and POL products.

Ahsan Mehanti of Arif Habib Corporation said the falling trend in the Karachi Interbank Offered Rate (Kibor) after a massive deceleration in the headline inflation to 23.1pc in February from 28.34 in the preceding month could be an indication of likely cut in the SBP’s policy rate in its upcoming monetary policy review, stable rupee and 30pc contraction in trade deficit in 8MFY24 also boosted investor confidence.

As a result, the KSE-100 index closed at 65,951.73 points after gaining 626.04 points or 0.96 per cent from the preceding session.

The overall trading volume surged 37.36pc to 472.82 million shares. The traded value also rose 21.50pc to Rs16.64bn on a day-on-day basis.

Shares registering the biggest increases in their share prices in absolute terms were Mari Petroleum Ltd (Rs68.45), Bhanero Textile Mills Ltd (Rs55.62), Pakistan Services Ltd (Rs40.62), Pakistan Hotels Developers Ltd (Rs37.79) and Bata Pakistan (Rs30.00).

Companies registering the biggest decreases in their share prices in absolute terms were Rafhan Maize Products Company Ltd (Rs213.28), Philip Morris (Pakistan) Ltd (Rs40.43), JDW Sugar Mills Ltd (Rs24.95), Khyber Tobacco Company Ltd (Rs23.36) and Shield Corporation Ltd (Rs18.02).

Foreign investors remained net buyers as they purchased shares worth $2.42m.

Published in Dawn, March 5th, 2024

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