KARACHI: Banking and technology sectors helped the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) extend its rally on Thursday, with the indices accumulating decent gains, while volumes soaring past the 800 million mark, a level breached only for the fourth time in the last 10 years.
Global equity markets, on the other hand, showed a mixed performance, while crude oil prices also slipped lower from the last close; WTI crude price declined 1.02pc to $41.77 while Brent crude price fell 0.42pc to $44.98.
The benchmark KSE-100 remained in the green throughout the day, registering its intraday high at 40,422.83 after gaining 540.05. It settled higher by 283.34 points at 40,166.12.
Among other indices, the KMI-30 Index gathered 477.10 points to close at 64,310.12, while the KSE All Share Index added 260.16 points, ending at 28,073.68.
The overall market volumes surged from 501.93 million shares to 826.74 million shares (+65pc). Worldcall Telecom (WTL 41.58pc), Power Cement Ltd (POWER 3.49pc) and Maple Leaf Cement Factory (MLCF 3.05pc) led the volume chart, exchanging 242.82 million, 45.34 million and 38.47 million shares, respectively.
Sectors that kept the benchmark index in the green included banking (95.75 points), technology (43.72 points) and oil & gas exploration (41.24 pts). Among the companies, MCB Bank Ltd (MCB 63.90 points), TRG Pakistan Ltd (TRG 39.63 points) and National Bank of Pakistan (NBP 21.78 points) remained the top contributors.
Adding 4.06pc to its cumulative market capitalisation, the technology & communication sector ended as the session’s top performer, with Pakistan Telecommunication Company Ltd (PTC 3.22pc), NetSol Technologies Ltd (NETSOL 3.63pc) and Avanceon Limited (AVN 7.47pc) posting decent gains.
Meanwhile, in a notification to the exchange, Avanceon Limited (AVN +7.47pc) informed that it has been selected by DHA Lahore to provide a ‘building management solution’ for a new ‘business hub building’ at approx. Rs30 million.
On the financial side, United Bank Limited (UBL -0.69pc) declared an after-tax profit of Rs6.34 billion for the 2nd quarter of FY20. The bank’s markup earned during the period under review inflated 22pc compared to last year, pushing its earnings per share higher by 18pc.