Stocks jump 1.4pc as China rolls over loan, parliament takes oath

By Our Correspondent
March 01, 2024
A trader can be seen at the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) building in Karachi. — PPI/File

Stocks rose over one percent on Thursday, boosted by optimism over the political and economic outlook, as China extended a $2 billion loan and the new parliament took oath, dealers said.


The Pakistan Stock Exchange's (PSX) benchmark KSE 100-share Index closed 1.37 percent or 875.07 points higher at 64,578.52 points, after hitting a high of 64,801.64 points and a low of 63,827.25 points during the session. The KSE-30 index also increased by 381.15 points or 1.77 percent to close at 21,889.09 points.

Dealers said the market is in a bullish mode as the political uncertainty has subsided and the economic indicators are improving. The rollover of the Chinese loan, which was due to mature on March 25, was a positive sign for the country's external account situation.

“Stocks closed bullish after the President (Arif Alvi) summoned National Assembly session himself for government setup, easing political noise,” said Ahsan Mehanti, an analyst at Arif Habib Corp.

"Easing political uncertainty, rupee stability and China’s rollover on $2 billion debt played a catalytic role in the bullish close at the PSX." Traded shares decreased by 37 million shares to 424.043 million shares from 461.390 million shares. The trading value rose to Rs17.053 billion from Rs16.000 billion. Market capital expanded to Rs9.225 trillion against Rs9.141 trillion. Of 364 companies active in the session, 188 closed in green, 161 in red and 15 remained unchanged.

Analyst Nabeel Haroon at Topline Securities said a positive session was observed at the market, where the index extended its previous day gains. "The positivity in the market can be attributed to a maiden session of the 16th National Assembly, where the newly elected representatives took their oath; this increased investor confidence as the country heads towards the fulfilment of the democratic process where the new government will take charge, from now on"

Major positive contributions to the index came from EFERT, MTL, PPL, HUBC, UBL and MEBL, as they cumulatively contributed 516 points. The highest increase was recorded in Pakistan Services Limited shares, which rose by Rs52.18 to Rs792.18 per share, followed by Millat Tractors Limited, which increased by Rs42.27 to Rs605.90 per share. A significant decline was noted in Bata Pakistan Limited, which fell by Rs33 to Rs1,667 per share, followed by Reliance Cotton Spinning Mills Limited, which closed lower by Rs31.45 to Rs460.55 per share.

Brokerage Arif Habib Ltd stated that the benchmark index witnessed a notable gain of 4.19 percent month-on-month, surpassing the 64,000 points level and setting sights on the 65,300 points target.

"Looking ahead, March is forecasted to witness new record highs for the index, exceeding 67,000 points level. The 63-64k zone is identified as a crucial support level, providing a foundation for potential price movements."

K-Electric Ltd. remained the volume leader with 54.958 million shares which closed higher by 11 paisas to Rs4.90 per share. Hascol Petrol followed it with 31.867 million shares, which closed higher by 3 paisas to Rs8.01 per share.

Other significant turnover stocks included Kohinoor Spining, Unity Foods Ltd, Telecard Limited, Pak Petroleum, WorldCall Telecom, Pak Refinery, Fauji Foods Ltd and Cnergyico PK. In Future’s Market, 316 companies recorded trading, of which 180 increased, 129 decreased and 7 remained unchanged.