Bearish trend prevails as KSE-100 sheds 240 points

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KARACHI: It was a tough day for investors at the Pakistan Stock Exchange, as they saw the indices crumble once again on Tuesday.

Volumes declined from the previous session as investors preferred to stay on sidelines ahead of the monetary policy announcement; the State Bank of Pakistan has kept interest rate unchanged at 13.25pc for the next two months.

Shedding 385.94 points, the KSE-100 Index recorded its intraday low at 42,153.29. It ended lower by 240.04 points at 42,299.19. The KMI-30 Index declined by 401.87 points to finish at 68,130.75, while the KSE All Share Index was down by 116.70 points, settling at 29,345.90. Out of the total traded shares, 122 advanced while 189 declined.

The overall trading volumes shrank from 198.48 million in the previous session to 189.00 million (-4.77pc). Maple Leaf Cement Factory Limited (MLCF +0.64pc) led the volume chart, followed by Hascol Petroleum Limited (HASCOL +5.47pc) and Unity Foods Limited (UNITY +0.14pc). The scripts had exchanged 29.71 million, 25.38 million and 9.87 million shares, respectively.

Sectors that dragged the benchmark index lower included banking (-102.91 points), oil & gas exploration (-51.37 points) and fertilizer (-42.09 points). Among the companies, Habib Bank Limited (HBL -33.63 points), MCB Bank Limited (MCB -26.06 points) and Pak Petroleum Limited (PPL -21.88 points) dented the index the most.

Despite the market trend being negative, the automobile assembling sector managed to gain 2.12pc in its cumulative market capitalization. Atlas Honda Limited (ATLH +4.94pc), Honda Atlas Cars (Pakistan) Limited (HCAR +3.72pc) and Indus Motor Company Limited (INDU +2.45pc) closed with decent gains.

On the market front, ICI Pakistan Limited (ICI +5.50pc) announced its financial performance for the second quarter ended December 31, 2019. The company’s sales increased by 1.29pc to Rs14.97 billion while its cost of sales shrunk by 6.33pc YoY. The company’s earnings per share improved from Rs2.63 to Rs12.38.

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