Record inflation takes toll on stock market; KSE-100 plunges 1,221 points

KARACHI: Investors of the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) witnessed blood bath on the first trading session of the week, as the indices moved south all day long with the benchmark KSE-100 Index slipping below the 41,000 mark.

Investors’ confidence took a massive hit following the government’s announcement of inflation figures for the month of January 2020. Moreover, the coronavirus outbreak, which has caused a decline in global stock markets, also impacted PSX on Monday.

According to figures released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), inflation was recorded at 14.6pc (highest in nine years) in January 2020 due to an increase in food and energy cost. On a month-on-month basis, inflation jumped by 1.97pc from 12.63pc in December 2019 to 14.60pc in January 2020.

Breaking the 41,000 mark, the KSE-100 Index recorded its intraday low at 40,233.64 after shedding 1,397.30 points or -3.36pc. It ended lower by 1,221.56 points at -2.93pc at 40,409.38.

Among other indices, the KMI-30 Index dropped 2,294.21 points to end at 64,780.81, while the KSE All Share Index fell by 751.93 points, closing at 28,315.61. Out of the total traded scripts, only 43 advanced while 269 declined.

Sectors behind the KSE-100’s fall included banking (-320.29 points), oil & gas exploration (-271.25 points) and fertiliser (-136.59 points). Among the companies, Pak Petroleum Limited (PPL -110.55 points), Habib Bank Limited (HBL -96.86 points) and Engro Corporation Limited (ENGRO -90.70 points) dented the index the most.

The oil & gas exploration sector lost 4.52pc from its cumulative market capitalization, with Oil and Gas Development Company Limited (OGDC -4.22pc), Pak Petroleum Limited (PPL -5.33pc), Mari Petroleum Company Limited (MARI -4.35pc) and Pakistan Oilfields Limited (POL -3.66pc) closing in the negative zone.

In a notification to the exchange, Mithchells Fruit Farm Limited (MFFL +1.43pc) has announced that it has finalised Bioexyte Food (Private) Limited as a preferred bidder for the acquisition of more than 30pc shares of the company. MFFL is in the process of negotiating and finalising bidding transaction documents.

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