The Business Report
KARACHI: The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) experienced a relatively dull session on Monday with the index settling 22 points lower as it was the last trading session before Eid holidays.
The trading began on a positive note with the index surging over 200 points. Unfortunately, the momentum could not be sustained as profit-taking set in which dragged index into red zone.
Key cement-sector stocks remained positive, but selling pressure was noted in small-ticket cement and big-ticket bank stocks, especially United Bank Limited.
At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded a decrease of 21.52 points or 0.05% to settle at 42,425.10. JS Global analyst Danish Ladhani said the market closed negative after the index hit an intra-day high of +255 and low of -138 points respectively.
The market will remain shut from August 21 to 23 on account of Eidul Azha holidays. “Mixed sentiment was seen in cement stocks when Lucky Cement (+1.20%), DG Khan Cement (+2.45%) and Fauji Cement (+1.17%) were positive whereas Maple Leaf Cement (-0.27%) and Cherat Cement (-0.31%) were in the red,” Ladhani said.
Financial stocks dragged the market down where MCB Bank (-0.17%), United Bank (-1.03%), and Bank AL Habib (-0.20%) closed negative while Habib Bank (+1.54%) stood positive.
Major heavyweights namely Pakistan Petroleum (-0.43%), MCB Bank (-0.17%), United Bank (-1.03%) and Pakistan Oilfields (-0.96%) cumulatively wiped 44 points off the index.
“Moving forward, we expect the market to remain volatile and choppy with flows from local and foreign institutions providing direction,” the analyst said.
Overall, trading volumes decreased to 147.6 million shares compared with Friday’s tally of 194.2m.
The value of shares traded during the day was Rs6.4 billion.
Shares of 363 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 165 stocks closed higher, 186 declined while 12 remained unchanged.
WorldCall Telecom was the volume leader with 14.4 million shares, gaining Rs0.03 to close at Rs2.03.
It was followed by The Bank of Punjab with 11 million shares, losing Rs0.16 to close at Rs11.78 and Engro Polymer and Chemicals with 6.9m shares, losing Rs0.43 to close at Rs34.46.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs241.4 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.