KARACHI: The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) crossed another milestone of 75,000 as jubilant investors continued value-hunting in the outgoing week amid an improved economic outlook.

Arif Habib Ltd (AHL) said the market performed robustly in all five sessions of the week, closing at an all-time high of 75,342 points. The bullish market sentiment was fuelled by optimism surrounding the potential negotiation of a new IMF package.

On the economic front, Large-Scale Manufacturing (LSM) output increased by two per cent year-on-year and contracted 9.35pc on month-on-month for March.

Furthermore, the country posted a current account surplus of $491m in April. Also, yields in the secondary market witnessed a decline across all the tenors, with a prominent decline of 62bps in 12-month T-bills, in anticipation of a likelihood of a rate cut in the June monetary policy committee meeting.

The rupee depreciated by Rs0.09 or 0.03pc to Rs278.21 against the US dollar week-on-week. In addition to this, the SBP reserves rose $15m to $9.1bn in the week ending on May 10.

As a result, the benchmark KSE-100 index gained 2,257 points or 3.09pc to close at 75,342.35 points week-on-week.

Sector-wise positive contributions came from commercial banks (1,076 points), E&Ps (396 points), fertiliser (196 points), automobile parts & accessories (102 points), and engineering (72 points).

Foreigner buying continued during the week, clocking in at $14.94m compared to a net buy of $2.73m last week. Major buying was witnessed in banks ($6.54m) and E&P ($4.52m).

The average trading volume plunged 23pc to 555m shares while the average value traded fell 10pc to $79m week-on-week.

The market’s focus in the upcoming week would be on developments related to the upcoming federal budget 2024-25, new IMF programme and potential investments from friendly countries.

Published in Dawn, May 19th, 2024

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