PSX closes lower by 578 points as profit-taking dampens market sentiment

By the closing bell, the KSE-100 settled at 78,232.10, down by 578.40 points or 0.73%

The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) witnessed selling pressure on Monday, resulting in a decline of 578 points in the benchmark KSE-100 Index during trading.

Starting the session on a positive note, the KSE-100 reached an intra-day high of 79,388.12 points. However, profit-taking activities reversed the trend, pulling the index into negative territory.

By the closing bell, the KSE-100 settled at 78,232.10, down by 578.40 points or 0.73%.

Key sectors such as automobile assemblers, cement, commercial banks, oil and gas exploration companies, OMCs, and pharmaceuticals experienced significant selling pressure. Index-heavy stocks including OGDC, PPL, PSO, SHEL, MCB, and MEBL ended the day in the red.

The recent bullish trend in the PSX over the past two trading days, supported by a favorable budget announcement without negative tax proposals, was countered by profit-taking today.

Analysts at Intermarket Securities Limited noted, “The market is likely to remain range-bound in the near term. The next significant event will be the passage of the budget in parliament, following the apparent withdrawal of concerns by the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), which will facilitate talks with the IMF for a new program.”

Additionally, the brokerage highlighted the positive impact of Pakistan’s military operation, Azm-estehkam, on security conditions, potentially boosting foreign direct investment (FDI) and improving market perception among international investors.

Globally, Asian shares were under pressure amid anticipation of US inflation data and geopolitical developments, including the US presidential debate and the French election.

In currency markets, the Pakistani rupee saw a marginal depreciation of 0.04% against the US dollar in the inter-bank market, closing at 278.62.

Trading volume on the PSX’s all-share index decreased to 385.17 million shares, with the value of shares traded declining to Rs15.45 billion.

Pervez Ahmed Co led the volume with 46.84 million shares traded, followed by WorldCall Telecom with 20.76 million shares and Hub Power Co. with 20.11 million shares.

Out of 432 companies traded, 122 recorded gains, 254 saw losses, while 56 remained unchanged.

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