Stocks dip 226 points on selling pressure

‘The market turned negative mainly to redemption at mutual funds, which prompted selling activity in banks, E&Ps, power, cement and O&GMCs'

KARACHI: Bearish trend prevailed at the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) on Wednesday, with the benchmark index losing over 200 points amid selling pressure.

Global equity markets, on the other hand, showed a positive trend, whereas crude oil prices inched up from the previous close; WTI crude price increased 1.26pc to $53.63 while Brent crude price rose 0.86pc to $56.38 (as at 4:05pm PST).

“The stock market opened on negative note and continued with the momentum mainly due to redemption at mutual funds, which prompted selling activity in banks, E&Ps, power, cement and oil & gas marketing stocks,” a report issued by Arif Habib Ltd read. “Investors instead preferred switching to food, chemical and power sectors as safe haven.”

Textile sector also saw selling pressure, partly due to yet another deferral of the most-awaited textile policy, the report stated.

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MARKET SUMMARY

The benchmark KSE-100 Index traded in the red throughout the day, registering its intraday low at 45,545.43 after losing 357.80 points. It settled lower by 226.29 points at 45,676.94.

Among other indices, the KMI-30 Index dropped 501.13 points to end at 72,735.84, while the KSE All Share Index fell short by 89.33 points, closing at 31,722.41.

The overall market volumes contracted from 491.76 million shares in the previous session to 476.57 million shares (-3pc). Average traded value also declined 4pc, from $124.2 million to $119.2 million. Silk Bank Ltd (SILK +7.50pc), Unity Foods Ltd (UNTIY +5.56pc) and Hum Network Limited (HUMNL +7.25pc) led the volume chart, exchanging 42.71 million, 41.06 million and 38.64 million shares, respectively.

Sectors that drove the benchmark index south included oil & gas exploration (-64.71 points), fertilizer (-49.03 points) and banking (-46.92 points). Among the companies, Oil and Gas Development Company Ltd (OGDC -35.18 points), Hub Power Company Ltd (HUBC -33.58 points) and Engro Corporation Ltd (ENGRO -30.55 points) dented the index the most.

Shedding 1.31pc from its cumulative market capitalization, the oil & gas exploration sector ended as the session’s worst performer, with POL (-1.25pc), PPL (-1.60pc) and OGDC (-2.11pc) ending in the negative.

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