Market Watch: Bears return to bourse as index sheds 264 points

KARACHI: Bears staged a comeback at the bourse on Wednesday as the benchmark KSE-100 index shed 264 points amid a lack of positive triggers and an uncertain domestic and international economic outlook.

The KSE-100 endured a topsy-turvy session, which ended on a bearish note, amid economic uncertainty after the Asian Development Bank (ADB) released its Outlook Update 2019.

The Manila-based lending agency cut the economic growth forecast for Pakistan to 2.8% – the lowest in South Asia – and sharply increased inflation projection to 12% – the highest in South Asia.

Furthermore, uncertainty in global markets due to fluctuating crude oil prices in the wake of escalating tensions in the Middle East also impacted the stock market.

At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share index recorded a decrease of 264.03 points, or 0.83%, to settle at 31,565.21 points.

JS Global analyst Maaz Mulla said the bourse had another weak trading session where the KSE-100 index closed at 31,565. The bearish sentiment could be attributed to the ongoing futures rollover week, he said.

K-Electric (+1.5%) was the volume leader, followed by Maple Leaf Cement (-2.5%) and Pakistan State Oil (-0.2%).

Selling pressure was witnessed in the banking sector as Habib Bank Limited (-1.8%), United Bank Limited (-2.5%), National Bank of Pakistan (-3.8%), Bank Alfalah (-1.7%) and MCB Bank (-0.7%) ended in the red, he said.

“On the results front, Pakistan State Oil (-0.2%) from the oil marketing companies sector declared its FY19 result, where the company posted earnings per share (EPS) of Rs27.06 with cash payout of Rs5 per share and 20% bonus shares.”

Pakistan Petroleum Limited (-0.5%) from the exploration and production sector also announced FY19 result, declaring EPS of Rs27.18 with cash payout of Rs2 per share, he said.

“Moving forward, we expect the market to remain volatile as pressure is likely to persist due to the rollover week while consolidation is likely to continue,” Mulla added.

Topline Securities, in its report, stated that after Tuesday’s relief, Pakistan equities returned to the negative territory as the index went down 264 points or 0.83% to close at 31,565.

Pakistan State Oil and Pakistan Petroleum Limited remained in the limelight with a cumulative volume of 10.5 million shares as both companies announced dividend of 20% in their financial results.

“Furthermore, Oil and Gas Development Company lost 1.58% owing to a decline in international oil prices while Mari Petroleum and Pakistan Oilfields had a flattish trend,” Topline said.

Investor participation went up 18% to 105 million shares while traded value was up 7%. Stock-wise volume leaders for the day were K-Electric, WorldCall Telecom and Pakistan State Oil with cumulative trading in 34 million shares, the report stated.

Overall, trading volumes increased to 104.8 million shares compared with Tuesday’s tally of 88.8 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs4.17 billion.

Shares of 362 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 130 stocks closed higher, 212 declined and 20 remained unchanged.

K-Electric was the volume leader with 14.9 million shares, gaining Rs0.05 to close at Rs3.31. It was followed by WorldCall Telecom with 12.4 million shares, gaining Rs0.15 to close at Rs1.08 and Pakistan State Oil with 6.96 million shares, losing Rs0.26 to close at Rs155.67.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs405.01 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.

KSE-100 index sheds 356 points or 1.1% to settle at 32,103

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