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Pakistani stocks, rupee end slightly lower; o/n rates flat

May 14, 2012


Investors monitor an electronic board displaying share prices during a trading session at the Karachi Stock Exchange May 14, 2012. —Reuters Photo

ISLAMABAD: Pakistani stocks ended slightly lower on Monday with investors exercising caution because of the uncertainty in ties between Islamabad and Washington, dealers said.

The Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE) benchmark 100-share index ended 0.01 per cent, or 1.72 points, lower at 14,228.77, with a volume of 77.5 million, compared to 14,230.49 points on Friday.

“Investors remained cautious amid uncertainty on the Pakistan-US relationship. As a result, volumes fell,” said Samar Iqbal, a dealer at Topline Securities.

Top Pakistani civilian and military officials are expected to discuss the resumption of important overland supplies to Nato forces in neighbouring Afghanistan on Tuesday.

Islamabad suspended the routes after a raid by Nato forces killed 24 Pakistani soldiers in November last year. The episode plunged already troubled ties between Pakistan and the US to their lowest point since Islamabad joined the US-led ‘war on terror’ in 2001.

In the currency market, the Pakistani rupee ended slightly weaker at 90.80/91.00 to the dollar, compared to Friday’s close of 90.86/90.

The rupee has been supported by remittances, which rose 20.2 per cent to $10.88 billion in the first 10 months of the 2011/12 fiscal year, compared with $9.05 billion in the same period last year.

In April, remittances totaled $1.14 billion.

Overnight rates in the money market ended at 11.90 per cent, the same level as Friday.